Do not trust the fake "Payment Via ATM Visa Card Will Be Shipped" emails
Written by Tomas Meskauskas on
What kind of email is "Payment Via ATM Visa Card Will Be Shipped"?
After inspecting the "Payment Via ATM Visa Card Will Be Shipped" email, we determined that it is spam. This fake letter is presented as a missive from the "Executive Office of the President United States American" (mistyped the same in the original) and even the 46th president of the USA – Joe Biden himself.
The email claims that the recipient will be sent an ATM card with over thirty million USD on it – as part of a compensation fund.
It must be emphasized that all these claims are false, and they are not associated with any real individuals or entities. This phishing email aims to extract sensitive information from recipients and potentially trick them into sending money to scammers.
"Payment Via ATM Visa Card Will Be Shipped" email scam overview
The spam email with the subject "Your Payment Via ATM Visa Card Will Be Shipped To Your House Address" begins by stating that it is a letter from the US president's "Executive Office". Furthermore, it is supposedly signed off by the 46th and current president of the USA – Joe Biden.
The scam email states that following an investigation involving multiple agencies, it was discovered that the recipient has failed to receive their "Outstanding Compensation Payments" for years. The bogus payments are now worth 36.5 million USD. Allegedly, this sum will be delivered in the form of an ATM Visa card using the DHL courier service.
Additionally, the letter claims that due to an error in their address, the recipient was not sent it sooner. Therefore, they are requested to reconfirm the following information – name, age, occupation, home address, and telephone number.
The spam email warns the recipient against contacting anyone else regarding this exorbitant payout. This statement is specifically intended to keep potential victims from conferring about the email with others and getting confirmation that it is a scam. The letter then doubles down and stresses that it is neither spam nor a scam. It is both, and by trusting this email – users can experience a variety of serious issues.
Scammers can monetize personally identifiable information by selling it to third-parties or otherwise abusing it for profit. What is more, spam mail that promises large amounts of money often requests recipients to make (in comparison) small payments.
Cyber criminals prefer to handle funds using difficult-to-trace methods – thus ensuring that they could not be persecuted and that victims would be unable to retrieve their money. Common techniques include using cryptocurrency, pre-paid vouchers, gift cards, or cash hidden in innocent-looking packages and shipped.
Alternatively, the victims can be asked to pay using a dubious payment gateway that operates as a phishing website and records the information entered into it. In these cases, scammers may obtain victims' financial information (e.g., online bank log-in credentials, banking account details, credit card numbers, etc.) and then use it to make fraudulent transactions and/or online purchases.
To summarize, the threats posed by spam mail like "Payment Via ATM Visa Card Will Be Shipped" include severe privacy issues, significant financial losses, and even identity theft.
If you have disclosed personally-identifiable or finance-related data to scammers – immediately contact the appropriate authorities. And if you believe that your account credentials have been exposed – change the passwords of all potentially compromised accounts and inform their official support without delay.
|Name||"Payment Via ATM Visa Card Will Be Shipped" phishing email|
|Threat Type||Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud|
|Fake Claim||Recipient has failed to receive certain payments for years and will be sent an ATM card with $36.5 million on it from the USA presidential office.|
|Disguise||Executive Office of the US President|
|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)||
To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your computer with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Combo Cleaner.
Phishing spam campaign examples
"Webmail Password Expired", "Trunk Box Delivery", "Password Expiry Notification", "Junk Filter", and "DHL - Shipment Designated" are merely some examples of phishing emails we have inspected recently.
This mail can target a wide variety of information, most commonly – personally identifiable details, finance-related data, and account log-in credentials. In addition to various scams, these emails are used to distribute trojans, ransomware, and other malware.
These letters can be variously disguised, including as messages from real people and legitimate companies, corporations, service providers, institutions, authorities, and other entities.
How do spam campaigns infect computers?
When a virulent file is executed, run, or otherwise opened – the infection chain is triggered. For example, Microsoft Office documents infect systems by executing malicious macro commands, while infectious OneNote files require users to click embedded files/links.
How to avoid installation of malware?
We strongly advise treating incoming emails and other messages with caution. The attachments and links present in suspicious/irrelevant mail must not be opened, as they can be infectious. It is essential to use Microsoft Office versions released after 2010 since they have the "Protected View" mode that prevents automatic macro execution.
However, it must be mentioned that malware is not spread exclusively via spam mail. Therefore, we advise downloading only from official and verified channels. Additionally, all programs must be activated and updated using legitimate functions/tools, as illegal activation tools ("cracks") and third-party updaters can contain malware.
Another recommendation is to be vigilant when browsing since fake and malicious online content usually appears ordinary and harmless.
We must emphasize the importance of having a reputable anti-virus installed and kept up-to-date. Security software must be used to run regular system scans and to remove threats and issues. 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 "Payment Via ATM Visa Card Will Be Shipped" spam email letter:
Subject: Your Payment Via ATM Visa Card Will Be Shipped To Your House Address:
Executive Office of the President United States American.
Office Address: 1600 Pennsylvania Ave NW, Washington, DC 20500, United States,
Payment Value: $36,500.000.00 USD
*************24 HRS SERVICE ***************
Your Payment Via ATM Visa Card Will Be Shipped To Your House Address:
This is to inform you officially that after our investigations with
the help of Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Homeland Security
Office, Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and other Security Agencies
in the Country for the year 2023, we discovered that you have not
receive your Outstanding Compensation Payments valued US$36.5 Million
only, I Just received a call from Mr. JERRY MEYER, the Director Of DHL
Express that your Outstanding compensation fund worth US$36.5 Million
Dollars which I sent to you from U.S President Office has been
returned back due to wrong address provided, I advise you to reconfirm
your name and correct house address, Phone number, Occupation and Age
to enable us resend the compensation fund to you immediately. You will
receive your Outstanding payments via a ATM VISA CARD PAYMENTS not a
As soon as the above mentioned details are received, your ATM Visa
Card worth US$36.5 Million will be delivered to your house address
without any further delay,I am very sorry for the delay you have gone
through in the past years. Thanks for adhering to this instruction and
once again accept my congratulations in advance.
We do await your response, so we can move on with this transaction and
make sure your funds gets to you.
NOTE: You are not to contact any office(s) or person(s) for mistake in
the release of your funds to you apart from the information stated
Finally, I want you to note that your funds is save with us, be inform
that this mail is not a spam or scam message, the US Government can
release your fund today if we received reply from you, base that I
have included my name Mr. Joe Biden and my SSN: 768 67 6797
for you to know that I am for real and not a scam if you need to
verify me, so stop dealing with any body if you have some imposters
you are dealing with and focus on getting your fund here from
Executive Office of the President United States American,
We wait for your prompt response on this email.
Mr. Joe Biden.
President of the United States Of America.
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- What is "Payment Via ATM Visa Card Will Be Shipped" phishing email?
- Types of malicious emails.
- How to spot a malicious email?
- What to do if you fell for an email scam?
Types of malicious 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.
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.
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:
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?
Spam emails are not personal. They are distributed in mass-scale operations – hence, thousands of users receive identical messages.
I have provided my personal information when tricked by this spam email, what should I do?
If you have disclosed your log-in credentials – immediately change the passwords of all potentially exposed accounts and inform their official support. And if you've provided other private data (e.g., ID card details, credit card numbers, etc.) – contact the appropriate authorities without delay.
I have read a spam email but didn't open the attachment, is my computer infected?
No, merely opening an email will not initiate any system infection chains. Devices are infected when malicious attachments or links are opened/clicked.
I have downloaded and opened a file attached to a spam email, is my computer infected?
If the file was an executable (.exe, .run, etc.) – most likely, yes – your device was infected. However, you might have avoided it if it was a document (.doc, .xls, .pdf, .one, etc.). These formats may need additional user interaction (e.g., enabling macro commands, clicking on embedded content, etc.) to start downloading/installing malware.
Will Combo Cleaner remove malware infections present in email attachments?
Yes, Combo Cleaner is designed to detect and remove threats. It is capable of eliminating practically all known malware infections. Keep in mind that running a complete system scan is essential – since sophisticated malicious software usually hides deep within systems.
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