Harmful Royal Mail Scams Use New Tactic To Steal Your Cash – How To Keep away from It


Post office and Royal Mail scams are nothing new as cyber thieves often use the trusted brands to trick consumers into giving out personal information. In the past, we’ve seen crooks online targeting users with fake text messages who usually claim a package is waiting for delivery, but only after a small unpaid fee has been paid. This is followed by a link to an official-looking website where data is then stolen.

Now that most of the people are well aware of this malicious SMS scam, criminals are trying to find new ways to make money from the latest threat to smartphone users using a clever – but nasty – trick.

As the Avast security team found, scammers now appear to be stealing money through apps containing something called fleeceware, which can oblige unsuspecting users to subscribe to expensive subscription plans that are almost impossible to cancel.

The way they get people to install these apps is through ads on social media platforms claiming to be from Royal Mail and monetary incentives of up to £ 10,000 for completing a survey and sending the Provide links to friends and family.

Once the first person has been tricked, it is easy to see how it is spreading as any victim they receive will be believed to have come from a friend or family member.

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Once the fake survey is completed, phone users will be asked to download a package tracking app installed on official app marketplaces including Google’s Play Store.

If a target is fooled, the app installs the fleeceware for a fee of $ 70 per month and is then charged to your account.

Avast says that one version of these malicious applications has been downloaded over 50,000 times.

“This type of fraud is all the more dangerous because it uses the social ties of its victims to spread. People don’t expect to receive scams from friends or family and are more likely to fall for the scam, especially considering the websites look like they are from trusted services, ”said Jakub Vávra, threat analyst at Avast.

“This can be further improved by localizing all websites. What is surprising is that the Fleeceware app is not localized and appears generic compared to the websites. What is noteworthy is that the profile contains overly positive and likely fake reviews in English. It is possible that the scammers planned to replace the last payload with another app or something more malicious. “

Avast reported the malicious app to Google’s security team so it should be removed soon, but it’s still worth staying vigilant as a new version is likely to come out once the current one gets banned.

Avast says that fleeceware apps come in a variety of forms and can mimic any category of use, but are often apps with simple features that are usually offered at a low price or for free.

Fleeceware apps usually offer a free three- to seven-day trial, but may require users to enter their billing information before the trial begins and will automatically charge them when the trial expires. Users should carefully read what happens after an app’s trial period ends and how much an app charges after a free trial period, and see if the fee is continually being automatically deducted from their card unless they cancel the subscription.

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