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DATCP Warns of Holiday Shipping Email Scam


December is here –and that means a lot of shopping, whether it’s in-store or online. Department of Ag, Trade, and Consumer Protection Director Michelle Reinen says any shopper could be susceptible to emails from scammers. 

Reinen tells us “those who have cyber-shopped and those consumers who have never been online at all. You can get an email that looks like it’s from a legitimate, big shipping company. It says there’s a package waiting to be delivered, but you need to verify some information – so click this link. And we all know clicking that link can be a really big problem to your computer and also in handing over your personal information to any scammer.”

For anyone who received an email asking for verification, Reinen says “consumers should just ignore this email, but it’s really tough, they look legitimate – you really have to look for the poor grammar, but the graphics and the color schemes are the same. And if you’re waiting for that package you certainly get a little anxious and if you’ve done a lot of online shopping, you could easily get confused as to what you’re waiting for and what has or has not been delivered yet.”

She also tells consumers never to “provide any personal information to do a verification, because that’s not necessary. The other thing you will see about these scam emails is that they’re incredibly vague, they don’t tell you who the package you’re waiting for is from or what it is that’s waiting to be delivered. So you would have no ability to match.”

Reinen tells consumers to keep track of what they are buying - especially through online retailers - and to raise any questions yourself. 

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