Postal Service’s Informed Delivery Feature Could Be Helping Fraudsters
The U.S. Postal Service’s new Informed Delivery program provides scanned copies of customers’ incoming mail, ideally making physical mail received through USPS more convenient. The program has 13 million users, but an internal warning issued by the Secret Service has highlighted some of methods fraudsters have used to abuse the system. The primary method is by signing up for the service in somebody else’s name. This method requires previous ownership of the identify details on the individual to be signed up, but once signed up, receiving advance scans of mail can allow the fraudsters to intercept credit cards and gift cards from mailboxes before they are received. In September, police busted a ring of seven fraudsters who had stolen $400,000 in gift cards from people’s mail. USPS now notifies customers by mail if their address has been signed up for the service, but considering the declining use of physical mail, this response will likely not serve as a highly effective deterrent to fraudsters.