Brief emails claiming that you have messages waiting and can click to view the notifications are currently hitting inboxes.
Different versions of the emails, which claim to have been sent by a “delivery agent”, specify different numbers of messages that are supposedly waiting for you. The name of the “delivery agent” used in the emails may vary.
However, if you click the link in the emails, you will not be taken to any waiting messages. Instead, you will be taken to a fraudulent website that claims that you are eligible to win prizes such as mobile phones or shopping vouchers.
The site will first ask you to fill in a survey about which Internet browser you use and then perform an – entirely fake -analysis of your answers. No matter what answers you provide, you will always be declared a winner. The site includes a bogus countdown timer that is designed to impart a sense of urgency so that you will not have time to think too carefully about what you are clicking on.
Next, you will be asked to click the prize you prefer. However, clicking does not lead to a prize claim form as you might expect. Instead, you will be taken to a third-party website that promises the chance to win further prizes by providing your name, email address, home address, and phone number.
However, the fine print on the pages indicates that any personal information that you provide will be shared with site sponsors and marketing companies. So, after entering, you will soon be inundated with unwanted and annoying phone calls, text messages, emails, and letters extolling the virtues of various products that you most likely neither want nor need.
And no matter how many of these dodgy sites you visit and interact with, you will never receive the prize you were originally promised.
Scams like these are very common and are often posted on Facebook as well as via email.
Scammers and spammers also use similar “missed message” emails to trick people into visiting highly suspect online pharmacy stores.
If you receive one of these messages, just hit the delete key. Don’t click any links that they contain.