Do not trust the MoneyGram email scam

Also Known As: MoneyGram spam
Damage level: Medium

What is MoneyGram email scam?

Phishing emails are used to trick recipients into providing personal information, for example, credit card details, usernames, passwords, social security numbers. Usually, scammers behind them pretend to be legitimate companies. This particular email is disguised as a letter from MoneyGram - an American money transfer company.

MoneyGram email scam email spam campaign

MoneyGram email scam overview

This email is written in German language. It suggests that the last interaction with the MoneyGram's website (moneygram.de) has been ended improperly and encourages to end the session properly via the provided link to prevent unauthorized access. The provided link is designed to open a fake MoneyGram website.

The main purpose of this phishing email is to trick recipients into opening a fake MoneyGram website and entering their email address and password on it. In other words, scammers use this phishing campaign to trick unsuspecting users into providing login credentials for their MoneyGram accounts.

Since MoneyGram is a money transfer company, scammers could use stolen accounts to make unauthorized transactions (to drain those accounts). Also, they may use stolen accounts to send money requests to other people. It is important to mention that scammers may try to use the provided login credentials to access other accounts.

It is important to mention that cybercriminals can use fake banking (or other) apps to trick users into providing login credentials. In such cases, cybercriminals create a replica of a bank's (or other institution's) app and upload it to a third-party website. If users download the app and enter their login credentials into it, they send them to cybercriminals.

Threat Summary:
Name MoneyGram Email Scam
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
Fake Claim Last MoneyGram session has been finished inappropriately
Disguise Letter from MoneyGram customer support
Related Domain i-travels[.]kz
Detection Names (i-travels[.]kz) Emsisoft (Phishing), ESET (Phishing), Kaspersky (Phishing), Sophos (Phishing), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
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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MoneyGram phishing email in general

To summarize, this phishing email is used to extract login credentials for MoneyGram accounts and possibly other accounts that can be accessed with the same email and password. More examples of phishing emails are "New Fax Received", "Email Cloud", and "Wage Increase". It is important to know that emails can be used to deliver malware.

How do spam campaigns infect computers?

When cybercriminals use email as a channel to distribute malware, they send letters with malicious files or links in them. In both cases, the purpose of such emails is to trick recipients into opening a file designed to install malicious software. Typically, files used in malspam campaigns are disguised as important, official documents.

In most cases, cybercriminals attempt to trick recipients into opening malicious Microsoft Office documents, PDF documents, RAR, ZIP, or other archive files (their contents), JavaScript files, executable files (like EXE). Malicious documents opened with MS Office do not install malware unless users enable macros commands (editing/content) in them.

It is important to know that Microsoft Office versions released before 2010 do not have the "Protected View" mode. It means that malicious documents opened with those versions do not need permission to enable macros commands to infect computers - they install malware once they are opened.

How to avoid installation of malware?

It is advisable not to open files (or website links) in emails received from unknown or suspicious addresses. Especially if the subject (and content) of those emails is not relevant. It is very common for emails of this kind contain malicious attachments or website links.

Programs should not be downloaded (or installed) via third-party downloaders (or installers), from unofficial websites, or other sources of this kind. It is common that those sources are used as tools to trick users into installing malware. Files and programs should be downloaded only from official websites and via direct links.

Installed software has to be activated and updated with tools, functions provided by its official developer. It is not legal to activate the installed software with cracking tools. Also, cracking tools (and third-party updaters) can be (and often are) malicious. Typically, users download them from unofficial websites or through other unreliable sources.

The operating system should be scanned for threats regularly. It is recommended to scan it with a reputable antivirus or anti-spyware software and that software up to date. If you've already opened malicious attachments, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate infiltrated malware.

Text presented in the MoneyGram email scam:

Subject: SPECIAL NOTICE : ID45254576195780384267


Es tut uns leid, Ihnen mitteilen zu müssen, dass Ihre letzte Sitzung mit dem Onlinedienst moneygram.de nicht korrekt beendet wurde.

Aus diesem Grund bitten wir Sie zu Ihrer Sicherheit, die Sitzung umgehend zu beenden. Um zu verhindern, dass Ihr Zugriff von jemandem außerhalb von Ihnen verwaltet wird


Vielen Dank, dass Sie ein Moneygram-Kunde sind

Mit freundlichen Grüßen


Fake MoneyGram website used to steal login credentials (email addresses and passwords):

moneygram email scam fake moneygram website

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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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