UPS

UPS In Depth

Sections on this page
  1. Common UPS Scams by Imposters
  2. How to Beat UPS Scams
  3. Protection Against UPS Scams

United Parcel Service (UPS) is one of the world’s largest and most recognizable delivery service providers, with 543,000 employees worldwide and more than $84.6 billion in revenue in 2020. UPS delivers packages globally every day except Sunday—totaling around 24.7 million packages and documents a day, according to its 2020 annual report. Unfortunately, UPS scams have become more common, especially in the online shopping era, with scammers looking to cash in on customers’ trust in a well-known brand.

Along with its air, ground, domestic, international, commercial, and residential delivery services, UPS also established its retail outlet, the UPS Store, allowing customers to complete individual shipping orders, buy office supplies, and get other shipping-related services. 

Common UPS Scams by Imposters

UPS scams can, unfortunately, target anyone, whether you’re an avid online shopper who frequently receives UPS packages or you use UPS as a business customer. These are the most common scams currently impacting the brand:

Email Phishing Scams

This widespread UPS scam involves an email informing you that you’ve missed a package delivery, and you need to click the link to schedule the delivery. The email could alternatively state that there is difficulty delivering the package or you need to update your delivery preferences.

You might see a UPS tracking number and the package’s shipping updates when you click the link and will be asked to enter your credit card details so the package can be delivered.

Example UPS scam email.
Look for red flags on fake UPS emails and don't click on any of the links.

Survey Email

In this newer version of the email phishing UPS scam, you’ll receive an email with a subject line titled “Confirmation email.” When you open it, the body of the message will explain that you’ve qualified for an exclusive reward. To earn the offer, you’ll need to complete a short survey about your experiences with UPS.

UPS scam involving fake rewards survey.
Always check the URL of the page—if it's not on the ups.com domain, it's not legitimate. Don't trust it just because it has the UPS logo.

Unfortunately, when you click on the button to start the survey, you may expose your device to malware. Or the survey may capture your personal information and put it in the hands of scammers.

Package Delivery Scams

You’ll receive a text stating that you have an overdue package from UPS that’s waiting to be delivered. The text contains a link that you must click to get the box delivered. Clicking on the link will take you to an imposter UPS website that asks you to enter personal and financial details to schedule the delivery of the package (that doesn’t exist).

UPS delivery text message scam.
Beware of text messages that contain links to non-UPS websites—they are likely scams designed to steal your information.

Clicking the link can also expose your device to malware that scammers can use to steal other information from your phone.

Phone Scams

You may receive a phone call from a UPS imposter claiming that you have a pending package and they need your personal information and/or payment to receive it. If you receive a voice mail and call back the number, you may have to pay high connection fees and expensive per-minute rates since the phone call typically comes from an overseas location.

Stolen UPS Accounts

Hackers can gain access to UPS accounts and make unauthorized charges. Once they steal an individual’s or company’s account number, they can use it to send mass mailings, ship fake checks, and move drugs and stolen products through the country.

Fraudulent checks or money orders

In this scam, you’ll receive an unexpected check or money order, typically by UPS Next Day Air service. This may be in response to an online advertisement or part of a fake job offer. You may also receive an email requesting to cash or deposit the money and return a portion of it using Western Union or another untraceable payment method. However, these checks usually end up being fraudulent.

Even if a bank initially believes the check to be legitimate, you may later find out that it is, in fact, a fake check, and the bank will remove it from your account.

Work-From-Home UPS Scams

Sometimes scammers use the UPS brand name to enhance their credibility when they’re trying to steal your money or information. This tends to be the case in work-from-home scams. If you’re hired to work as a payroll (or other checks) processor, a scammer will typically ask you to purchase check production software and will provide or ask you to obtain a UPS account number.

You’ll print the fraudulent checks and send them to people who advertised items for sale using UPS Next Day Air or other overnight delivery. The bank will later return the checks as fraudulent.

How to Beat UPS Scams

Scammers are well aware that more people than ever are purchasing items online and receiving shipments. If you are a regular online shopper, take the following steps to avoid theft of your money and personal information:

  • Visit the UPS website directly to track packages.
  • Avoid clicking on links in suspicious emails and texts.
  • Watch your UPS account closely for unauthorized charges.
  • Change your UPS account password frequently.
  • Verify a caller’s first and last name and the call-back number if you receive a call from UPS, and verify the phone number is legitimate before proceeding with the call.
  • Assume that any attempts to gather your personal information through email and texts are a scam, and follow up with UPS if you suspect fraudulent messages.
  • Keep tabs on your receipts and UPS shipping information, so you know when to expect packages.
  • Use caution when researching work-from-home opportunities, especially those that ask you to provide payment upfront or obtain a UPS account.
  • Always check the email sender of a UPS email. Legitimate emails come from ups.com or upsemail.com.
  • Ask for the tracking number of the package if a UPS representative contacts you regarding delivery.
  • Watch for grammar and spelling errors in any emails you receive from UPS—these errors could indicate a scam.
Contact Details

UPS



Verified.org

Verified Contact Details

It's important to verify links and contact details to beat imposters.

Protection Against UPS Scams

To protect yourself from UPS scams, reach out to UPS directly if you suspect fraudulent activity.

Report Fraudulent Messages to UPS

If you have received an email or text that you believe is fraudulent, you can report it to UPS at [email protected]. You can also forward messages directly to UPS at the same email address.

Do not change the original subject line or contents when forwarding the email, and don’t include any personal information. This will allow UPS to track the true origin of the message.

Report Fraudulent Activity on UPS Account

If you notice unauthorized activity on your UPS account, someone may have stolen your account number. Report the fraudulent charges to UPS immediately. UPS will work with you to investigate the fraud and take action on your behalf, including reversing the unauthorized charges.

Avoid Providing Personal Information

UPS has officially spoken out against scammers who offer package delivery services through unsolicited emails, mail, and phone calls, in exchange for:

  • Payments
  • Your personal information
  • Your financial information
  • Account numbers
  • IDs
  • Passwords
  • Copies of invoices

The company will not ask for your personal information through any of these methods. If you have any questions about a message or call you’ve received, contact UPS directly.

Contact Your Financial Institution

UPS accepts no responsibility for costs or charges that occur as a result of fraudulent activity. If you lose money to a scammer impersonating UPS, you should immediately contact your financial institution, credit card company, or the payment service you used to transfer funds. If you used a debit or credit card, you must cancel that card and request a new one. 

Report UPS Scam Messages

Report UPS scam messages to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to help stop the scammers. If you believe you have received a scam UPS text, forward it to 7726 (SPAM).

Scams Impacting UPS

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Shipping Scams Use Fake Emails to Steal Your Information
3 February 2020 |

Shipping Scams Use Fake Emails to Steal Your Information

Scammers are sending convincing emails, posing as shipping companies and online shopping sites, in order to collect your personal information.

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15 October 2021 |

The "Little Gift" is a Lie! Protect Yourself From Fake Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile Texts

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Tinder Code Scam Leads to Monthly Porn Subscriptions
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The Tinder safe dating scam tricks users into giving up their credit card info to verify their profiles and leads to auto-enrollment in monthly subscription-based porn sites.

Recognize Fake Bank Reps Calling to Steal Your Information
6 October 2021 |

Recognize Fake Bank Reps Calling to Steal Your Information

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Vishing Scams: What They Are and How to Protect Yourself
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Red Flags of Advance Fee Scams and How to Beat Them
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Elderly Targeted in Sweepstakes Scams: A Lesson to Remember
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Read how an actual sweepstakes scheme unfolded and scammed an elderly couple out of $800,000, as told by investigative consultant and ex-DEA Special Agent, Jason James.

Guides To Protect Against Postal & Delivery Services Scams

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Beat FedEx Scams: Stay Safe From Imposters and Fraudsters
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Beat FedEx Scams: Stay Safe From Imposters and Fraudsters

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How to Report Scams in Australia
20 October 2021

How to Report Scams in Australia

With so many services available it is hard to work out what to do. We narrow it down to give you the essential information you need to report a scam and get help.

Ultimate Checklist to Protect Your Family From Scams
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With so many devices and accounts opening you up to various scams, you must protect your family from identity theft and other scams.

Direct or Third-Party: What is The Best Way to Book Hotels?
19 October 2021 |

Direct or Third-Party: What is The Best Way to Book Hotels?

We break down the pros and cons of booking a room through a hotel’s website or using third-party sites to secure the best deals and why.

What to Do If You've Been Scammed (How to Report Scams)
18 October 2021 |

What to Do If You've Been Scammed (How to Report Scams)

Getting scammed isn't fun, and there's often little you can do to recoup your losses, but there are steps you should take to protect yourself.

News About Postal & Delivery Services Scams

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N.J. Man Pleads Guilty to SIM Swapping Conspiracy Stealing Over $500k From Victims
5 October 2021 |

N.J. Man Pleads Guilty to SIM Swapping Conspiracy Stealing Over $500k From Victims

This case shows just why you need to be aware of SIM swapping and how to protect your cell phone number from criminals like this.

Student Loan Scammers Arrested After Stealing $6.1 Million
22 September 2021 |

Student Loan Scammers Arrested After Stealing $6.1 Million

After a 3-year long scam, Angela Mirabella and six others have been indicted on several charges, including grand theft.

FBI Warns Fake COVID Vaccine Cards Could Lead to Prison Time
14 September 2021 |

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Taking a chance on a fake COVID-19 vaccination card seems like an easy way to get around requirements, but think again before you land yourself in prison.

Beware of this New Scam Involving A Fake Call from CBP
10 September 2021 |

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Sometimes it just safer not to pick up calls from unknown phone numbers.

Nike Teams Up with U.S. Customs to Stop Counterfeiters
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Nike is taking a stand against counterfeiters and stopping fake products before they hit U.S. soil.