How to spot scams like the fake DHL Express Shipment Confirmation emails

Also Known As: DHL Express Shipment Confirmation spam
Damage level: Medium

What is "DHL Express Shipment Confirmation email scam"?

"DHL Express Shipment Confirmation email scam" refers to an email spam campaign. These letters are disguised as notifications from DHL Express - a division of DHL dealing in courier, delivery, and mail services. The scam letters contain a phishing file designed to steal users' email account log-in credentials.

DHL Express Shipment Confirmation email spam campaign

"DHL Express Shipment Confirmation email scam" in detail

The scam emails claim to have shipment details attached to them. The delivery is supposedly shipped through DHL Express. It must be emphasized that these letters are fake. The attached HTML file aims to obtain users' email account passwords; it claims that users must sign in through it using their mail accounts to access the document.

Therefore, by trusting these letters - users can have their emails stolen. Should attempts to view the file have already been made, it is advised to immediately change the log-in credentials of all potentially compromised accounts. It is also recommended to contact the official support of said accounts.

Emails accounts are targeted as they are commonly connected with others. Therefore, by stealing emails - access may be gain to content associated with them. The stolen platforms are then used to generate revenue via deceptive pleas for loans (under the guise of the accounts' genuine owners), malware proliferation (by sharing malicious files and links), fraudulent monetary transactions, unauthorized online purchases, and so forth.

To summarize, by trusting the "DHL Express Shipment Confirmation" emails, users can experience severe privacy issues, financial losses, and identity theft.

Threat Summary:
Name DHL Express Shipment Confirmation email scam
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
Fake Claim Scam emails claim to contain details concerning a shipment.
Disguise Scam emails are disguised as notifications from DHL Express
Attachment(s) E-Contact Form.html (filename may vary)
Detection Names (E-Contact Form.html) N/A (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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Spam campaigns in general

"Microsoft mailbox sync operation has failed again", "New documents assigned", "Payment completed on behalf of my boss" - are some examples of phishing spam campaigns. Aside from various scams, such emails are also used to distribute malware. Due to the prevalence of spam mail, it is strongly advised to exercise caution with incoming emails.

How do spam campaigns infect computers?

Spam campaigns proliferate malware via virulent files attached to and/or linked inside the emails. These files can be in various formats, e.g., executables, archives, PDF and Microsoft Office documents, JavaScript, etc. When the files are opened - the malicious software download/installation is initiated.

For example, Microsoft Office documents cause infections by executing malicious macro commands. This process is automatic in Microsoft Office versions released before 2010. In later versions,"Protected View" mode prevents this from triggering when a document is opened; instead, users can manually enable macros (i.e., editing/content).

How to avoid installation of malware?

Suspect/Irrelevant emails must not be opened, especially any attachments or links found in them. It is recommended to use Microsoft Office versions released after 2010.

Malware is also spread via dubious download channels (e.g., unofficial and freeware sites, Peer-to-Peer sharing networks, etc.), illegal activation tools ("cracks"), and fake updates. Therefore, it is important to only download from official/verified sources and activate/update programs with tools provided by genuine developers.

It is paramount to have a dependable anti-virus installed and kept updated. This software has to be used to run regular system scans and to remove threats. 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 "DHL Express Shipment Confirmation" scam email letter:

Subject: Your DHL Express Shipment Request Confirmation


Your shipment is ready for delivery.
Kindly view the attached file to view shipment details and confirm consignee address correct for express delivery.


If you have any issues or questions, please do not hesitate to contact our customer service team for assistance.


Thank you for shipping with DHL Express!
DHL Express Delivery
The Mail & Logistics Group. 2021 ©
All rights reserved.

Screenshot of the phishing file distributed through the "DHL Express Shipment Confirmation" spam campaign ("E-Contact Form.html"):

DHL Express Shipment Confirmation email phishing attachment (E-Contact Form.html)

Another example of DHL Express shipment-themed spam email distributing an HTML file:

DHL Express-themed spam email

Text presented within:

Subject: Shipment for ********


Greetings ********, Find DHL shipment receipt attached for your delivery.
Download, Print and fill your correct address for delivery. AIRWAYBILL : Shipping Documents PICKUP DATE (dd/mm/yyyy) : 10/09/2021 SHIPPED TO : ******** STATUS : IN TRANSIT SIGNED FOR : ********


Best Regards,

The DHL Team

Thank you for using On Demand Delivery.

Express - Excellence. Simply delivered.
Your data will be treated in accordance with the personal data processing policy available  here.

DHL Express |   Contact DHL |  Privacy Policy |  Unsubscribe

2021 © DHL  International GmbH. All rights reserved.

Screenshot of the attached HTML document:

HTML file distributed via DHL Express-themed spam email (2021-09-08)

Another example of a spam email distributing an identical HTML file:

DHL Express Shipment Confirmation email spam (2021-09-10)

Text presented within:

Subject: Shipment


Dear Customer,

Attached is your DHL shipment Receipt with  Air Way Bill: #5784968663.

Download your shipment receipt, print and fill in your correct address for delivery and submit in any DHL office close to your location for shipment.

Shipped to: ********
Signed for: ********
ARRIVAL DATE and TIME: 13th September, 2021 and 14:22pm

Best Regards,

The DHL Team

Thank you for using On Demand Delivery.

DHL Express - Excellence. Simply delivered.
Your data will be treated in accordance with the personal data processing policy available  here.

DHL Express |   Contact DHL |  Privacy Policy |  Unsubscribe

2021 © DHL  International GmbH. All rights reserved.

Another example of DHL Shipment-themed spam email used to distribute an HTML file designed to steal login credentials:

DHL shipment confirmation-themed spam email (2021-09-17)

Text presented within:

Subject: DHL Shipment Notice of Arrival.


Dear ********


Kindly confirm your shipment

Best Regards

Screenshot of the attached HTML file:

HTML file attached to DHL shipment confirmation-themed spam email (2021-09-17)

Yet another example of DHL shipment-themed spam email promoting a malicious HTML file:

DHL Shipment-themed spam email (2021-09-20)

Text presented within:

Subject: Shipping Alert For ********


Dear ********,

We are pleased to inform you that the attached DHL shipment has been scheduled for delivery to your destination:

AIRWAYBILL NUMBER              : Shipping Documents 46868930
PICKUP DATE (dd/mm/yyyy)       : 23/08/2021
SHIPPED  TO                    : ********
SHIPPERS REFERENCE             : 4686893083SG202106040749235
STATUS                         : IN TRANSIT
SIGNED FOR                     : ********

View package details in the attachment.

Emily Chong
Thank you for choosing DHL Express

For more information on our services please visit the DHL Web Site
at hxxp://www.dhl.com or contact your local DHL customer service office.
This is an auto-generated e-mail/fax. Please do not reply to this e-mail/fax.

Another example of an email from "DHL Express Shipment Confirmation" spam campaign:

DHL Express Shipment Confirmation scam email (2023-04-20)

Text presented within:

Subject: Your DHL package is at the store ready for delivery


Dear DHL Customer,

Reminder: DHL Express informs you that there are instructions pending from you for your shipment no. CPF 057 200 664 645

To complete the delivery as soon as possible, confirm the payment of 1.85 euros, the online confirmation must be made within the next two days before expiration.

Arrival at the DHL Express: 10.04.2023
Send my parcel

Best regards
You will receive this message as a registered DHL customer. Please do not reply to this email and contact our customer service if you have any questions. The objection must be sent by post to DHL Express, Adenauerallee 4417250 Mirow or by e-mail.
Post DHL Group
2023 © DHL Express. All rights reserved.

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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.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Why did I receive this email?

For scammers, anyone is a potential victim (their emails are not personal). Scammers send the same letter to all addresses they have in their database.

I have provided my personal information when tricked by this email, what should I do?

If you have provided your password, then change that password as soon as possible. If your account is already hijacked, contact the service provider to see if they can help you with recovering your account. Also, change other passwords.

I have downloaded and opened a malicious file attached to an email, is my computer infected?

If you have opened an executable file, your computer is probably already infected. Not all files infect computers right after they are opened. For example, malicious MS Office documents inject malware after users enable macros commands (editing/content). Archive files cannot infect computers until their contents are opened, etc.

I have read the email but didn't open the attachment, is my computer infected?

No, it is safe to open emails without opening links or files attached to them.

Will Combo Cleaner remove malware infections that were present in email attachment?

Yes, Combo Cleaner can detect and eliminate almost all known malware. It is important to know that high-end malware can hide deep in the operating system. Malware of this kind cannot be detected without running a full system scan.

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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.

PCrisk security portal is brought by a company RCS LT. Joined forces of security researchers help educate computer users about the latest online security threats. More information about the company RCS LT.

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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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