Do not trust "Emails Sync Failure" phishing emails

Also Known As: Emails Sync Failure spam
Damage level: Medium

What is the "Emails Sync Failure" scam message?

"Emails Sync Failure" is a spam email campaign. The term "spam campaign" refers to a mass-scale operation, during which deceptive emails are sent by the thousand. The messages sent through this campaign are disguised as notifications concerning undelivered emails.

The purpose of this scam is to trick the recipients into disclosing their email account passwords via a phishing website, thereby allowing scammers access to the account.

Emails Sync Failure email spam campaign

The "Emails Sync Failure" scam emails (the subject/title "Notifications | undelivered emails to your mailbox" might vary) claim that recipients have messages pending arrival in their inboxes. The fake emails were supposedly undelivered due to a type of synchronization failure of the email account. The mail server allegedly blocked five messages.

Recipients are given the option to view, release (into the inbox), or delete the pending emails. The link for these options redirects to a phishing website, which is presented as the sign-in page to the email account. By entering the account's password into the site, users will not log into their account but rather expose it to the scammers.

Therefore, you are strongly advised against trusting the "Emails Sync Failure" scam messages. Should attempts to log-in through the phishing website have already been made, users must change the password of the exposed email and all potentially affected accounts that are connected to it. Additionally, you are advised to contact the official support of the compromised accounts.

Email accounts are of particular interest to scammers, as they are typically connected to various other accounts and services. Therefore, through hijacked mail accounts, cyber criminals can gain access and control over others, which are associated/registered through the email address.

To elaborate on how certain accounts can be misused: communication accounts (e.g. emails, social networking/media, messengers, etc.) can be employed by scammers to impersonate the genuine owner and ask contacts/friends for loans and/or to spread malware (by sharing infectious links/files).

Accounts that directly or indirectly deal with financial information (e.g. store credit card details), such as banking, online money transfers, e-commerce, digital wallet and similar, can be used to make fraudulent monetary transactions and to make online purchases.

To summarize, by trusting "Emails Sync Failure" or other scam emails, users might experience system infections, serious privacy issues, financial loss and even identity theft.

Threat Summary:
Name Emails Sync Failure Email Scam
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
Fake Claim Scam emails claim recipients have undelivered messages awaiting their action (viewing, approval or deletion).
Related Domains deck2[.]fr
Serving IP Address (deck2[.]fr)
Symptoms Unauthorized online purchases, changed online account passwords, identity theft, illegal access of the computer.
Distribution methods Deceptive emails, rogue online pop-up ads, search engine poisoning techniques, misspelled domains.
Damage Loss of sensitive private information, monetary loss, identity theft.
Malware Removal (Windows)

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"Mail - Quarantined", "Deactivating All Inactive Accounts", and "Account Access Disabled" are some examples of other spam campaigns, which target email account log-in credentials, however, deceptive emails are not used exclusively for phishing, they are also employed to facilitate other scams and to spread malware (e.g. Trojans, ransomware, etc.).

Therefore, exercise caution with all incoming email messages.

How do spam campaigns infect computers?

Systems are infected via malicious files distributed through spam campaigns. These files can be attached and/or linked inside the emails. Infectious files can be in various formats (e.g. Microsoft Office and PDF documents, archive and executable files, JavaScript, etc.).

When these files are executed, run or otherwise opened, the infection process (i.e. malware download/installation) is triggered. For example, Microsoft Office documents (e.g. "Invoice_24077.xlsb") cause infections by executing malicious macro commands.

In Microsoft Office versions released prior to 2010, malware download/installation begins when an infectious document is opened, however, newer versions have "Protected View" mode that prevents automatic execution of macros. Instead, users are asked to enable macro commands (i.e., to enable editing/content) and hence infection processes can only be started by manually enabling macros.

How to avoid installation of malware

To avoid malware spread via spam mail, you are strongly advised against opening suspicious or irrelevant emails, especially those with any attachments or links present within them.

Additionally, use Microsoft Office versions released after 2010. Malicious programs also proliferate through untrusted download channels (e.g. unofficial and free file-hosting sites, Peer-to-Peer sharing networks and other third party downloaders), illegal software activation ("cracking") tools, and fake updaters.

Therefore, only download from official/verified sources and activate and update software with tools/functions provided by legitimate developers.

To ensure device integrity and user privacy, have a reputable anti-virus/anti-spyware suite installed and kept updated. Furthermore, use these programs to run regular system scans and to remove detected/potential threats.

If you have already opened malicious attachments, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Text presented in the "Emails Sync Failure" email message:

Subject: Notifications | undelivered emails to your mailbox

Your mailbox Pending Emails Sync Failure.


- Mail-Server Blocked 5 incoming messages .    
As of January 14, 2021 you have 5 incoming pending messages.


Click here to View, Release or Delete.
Mail account


- System Administrator.


This notification was sent to - Don't want occasional updates about subscription preferences and friendly suggestions?

Screenshot of the phishing website promoted by "Emails Sync Failure" scam emails:

Emails Sync Failure scam promoted website

Another example of an email from "Emails Sync Failure" spam campaign:

Email Sync Failure spam (2022-10-27)

Text presented within:

Subject: ********** You have [7] pending messages on the mail queue.; Error #656570

********** Email Sync Failure.

E-mail Sync for your E-mailbox has failed and you have [7] pending messages on the mail queue.

Follow the steps below to download pending emails and continue to receive emails on your ********** account.

Preview E-mails now

Thank you,

********** Email Account Support © 2022 All Rights Reserved.
This email can't receive replies. For more information, visit the  Accounts He lp Center.

Screenshot of the promoted phishing site (design is imitated accordingly to user's email address):

Phishing site promoted via Email Sync Failure spam (2022-10-27)

Another example of an email from "Emails Sync Failure" spam campaign:

Emails Sync Failure scam (2023-01-26)

Text presented within:

Subject: ******** Your sync has failed | undelivered Emails to your mailbox


Your mailbox Pending Emails Sync Failure.
******** Mail-Server Blocked 9 incoming messages .
As of Monday 23rd January 2023, you have 9 incoming pending messages

Click to  View,  Release or  Delete pending e-mail messages.

Mail account: ********

******** Mail System Administrator
This notification was sent to ********; Don't want occasional updates about subscription preferences and friendly suggestions?

Yet another example of an email from "Emails Sync Failure" spam campaign:

Emails Sync Failure scam (2023-11-09)

Text presented within:

Subject: Messages Failed To Deliver


Dear ********,
Your Mailbox Pending Emails Sync Failure.

******** mail-server blocked 5 incoming messages
As of 11/09/2023 07:22:18 am, you have 5 incoming pending messages.

Click to View , realease , or delete your pending e-mail messages.

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Quick menu:

Types of malicious emails:

Phishing email icon Phishing Emails

Most commonly, cybercriminals use deceptive emails to trick Internet users into giving away their sensitive private information, for example, login information for various online services, email accounts, or online banking information.

Such attacks are called phishing. In a phishing attack, cybercriminals usually send an email message with some popular service logo (for example, Microsoft, DHL, Amazon, Netflix), create urgency (wrong shipping address, expired password, etc.), and place a link which they hope their potential victims will click on.

After clicking the link presented in such email message, victims are redirected to a fake website that looks identical or extremely similar to the original one. Victims are then asked to enter their password, credit card details, or some other information that gets stolen by cybercriminals.

Email-virus icon Emails with Malicious Attachments

Another popular attack vector is email spam with malicious attachments that infect users' computers with malware. Malicious attachments usually carry trojans that are capable of stealing passwords, banking information, and other sensitive information.

In such attacks, cybercriminals' main goal is to trick their potential victims into opening an infected email attachment. To achieve this goal, email messages usually talk about recently received invoices, faxes, or voice messages.

If a potential victim falls for the lure and opens the attachment, their computers get infected, and cybercriminals can collect a lot of sensitive information.

While it's a more complicated method to steal personal information (spam filters and antivirus programs usually detect such attempts), if successful, cybercriminals can get a much wider array of data and can collect information for a long period of time.

Sextortion email icon Sextortion Emails

This is a type of phishing. In this case, users receive an email claiming that a cybercriminal could access the webcam of the potential victim and has a video recording of one's masturbation.

To get rid of the video, victims are asked to pay a ransom (usually using Bitcoin or another cryptocurrency). Nevertheless, all of these claims are false - users who receive such emails should ignore and delete them.

How to spot a malicious email?

While cyber criminals try to make their lure emails look trustworthy, here are some things that you should look for when trying to spot a phishing email:

  • Check the sender's ("from") email address: Hover your mouse over the "from" address and check if it's legitimate. For example, if you received an email from Microsoft, be sure to check if the email address is @microsoft.com and not something suspicious like @m1crosoft.com, @microsfot.com, @account-security-noreply.com, etc.
  • Check for generic greetings: If the greeting in the email is "Dear user", "Dear @youremail.com", "Dear valued customer", this should raise suspiciousness. Most commonly, companies call you by your name. Lack of this information could signal a phishing attempt.
  • Check the links in the email: Hover your mouse over the link presented in the email, if the link that appears seems suspicious, don't click it. For example, if you received an email from Microsoft and the link in the email shows that it will go to firebasestorage.googleapis.com/v0... you shouldn't trust it. It's best not to click any links in the emails but to visit the company website that sent you the email in the first place.
  • Don't blindly trust email attachments: Most commonly, legitimate companies will ask you to log in to their website and to view any documents there; if you received an email with an attachment, it's a good idea to scan it with an antivirus application. Infected email attachments are a common attack vector used by cybercriminals.

To minimise the risk of opening phishing and malicious emails we recommend using Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows

Example of a spam email:

Example of an email spam

What to do if you fell for an email scam?

  • If you clicked on a link in a phishing email and entered your password - be sure to change your password as soon as possible. Usually, cybercriminals collect stolen credentials and then sell them to other groups that use them for malicious purposes. If you change your password in a timely manner, there's a chance that criminals won't have enough time to do any damage.
  • If you entered your credit card information - contact your bank as soon as possible and explain the situation. There's a good chance that you will need to cancel your compromised credit card and get a new one.
  • If you see any signs of identity theft - you should immediately contact the Federal Trade Commission. This institution will collect information about your situation and create a personal recovery plan.
  • If you opened a malicious attachment - your computer is probably infected, you should scan it with a reputable antivirus application. For this purpose, we recommend using Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows.
  • Help other Internet users - report phishing emails to Anti-Phishing Working Group, FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center, National Fraud Information Center and U.S. Department of Justice.

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About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

Tomas Meskauskas - expert security researcher, professional malware analyst.

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of over 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an author and editor for pcrisk.com since 2010. Follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn to stay informed about the latest online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

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Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

Increased attack rate of infections detected within the last 24 hours.

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