Do not trust fake "Department Of Treasury - Compensation Funds" emails

Also Known As: "Department Of Treasury - Compensation Funds" phishing email
Damage level: Medium

What kind of email is "Department Of Treasury - Compensation Funds"?

This fake "Department Of Treasury - Compensation Funds" email promises recipients eight million dollars and a new car in compensation. The purpose of this spam mail is to collect personally identifiable information. However, the scammers behind this phishing campaign might also seek to deceive recipients into sending them money.

It must be emphasized that all the claims made by this email are false, and this mail is not associated with the actual United States Department of the Treasury or any other national treasury.

Department Of Treasury - Compensation Funds email spam campaign

"Department Of Treasury - Compensation Funds" email scam overview

The spam email with the subject "ATTENTION DEAR BENEFICIARY" (may vary) identifies the sender as the secretary of the Department of the Treasury. The letter states that the recipient is entitled to $8 million in compensation (why they are being compensated is not specified). The alleged compensation package also includes a new car – a Ford F-150.

As mentioned in the introduction, all the information provided by this email is false. It must be reiterated that this mail is in no way associated with the United States Department of the Treasury (USDT), any other national treasury, or the Ford Motor Company.

The letter requests the recipient to send their details – full name, age, occupation, address, and telephone number. Information of this kind can be utilized for a variety of nefarious purposes, including identity theft.

However, the scammers might have other goals in mind. They may trick victims into disclosing finance-related data, such as online bank account log-in credentials, banking account details, credit/debit card numbers, and so on.

Cyber criminals can ask victims to make bogus payments, e.g., taxes, transaction/processing fees, etc. Difficult-to-trace methods are used to diminish the chances of successful prosecution and of fund retrieval by victims (e.g., cryptocurrencies, gift cards, pre-paid vouchers, cash hidden in packages and shipped, etc.).

In summary, by trusting an email like "Department Of Treasury - Compensation Funds" – users can experience serious privacy issues, financial losses, and even identity theft.

If you have disclosed your personally identifiable details or finance-related information – contact the corresponding authorities without delay.

Threat Summary:
Name "Department Of Treasury - Compensation Funds" phishing email
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
Fake Claim Recipient is entitled to $8 million and a new car in compensation.
Disguise National treasury (likely USDT)
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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Phishing spam campaign examples

"Your Statement Reviewed And Paid", "Account Password Needs To Be Reset", "Secured Document", "Chase - Access Restricted", and "SSL Port Server Errors" are just some of our newest articles on phishing campaigns.

These emails are used to promote various scams and to proliferate malware. Spam letters use false claims related to financial compensation, inheritances, lotteries, refunds, tech support, blackmail attempts, service expiration, product promotions, suspicious account activities, password renewals, etc. – to gain recipients' trust.

While spam emails are often poorly made and riddled with grammatical/spelling errors, they can also be competently crafted and even believably disguised as messages from legitimate entities (e.g., governmental bodies, authorities, service providers, organizations, companies, etc.).

How do spam campaigns infect computers?

Spam campaigns distribute malware through malicious files, which can be attached to or linked inside the emails/messages. These files can be documents (PDF, Microsoft Office, Microsoft OneNote, etc.), archives (ZIP, RAR, etc.), executables (.exe, .run, etc.), JavaScript, and so on.

Once a virulent file is opened – the malware download/installation chain is jumpstarted. However, some formats need extra actions to initiate system infection processes. For example, Microsoft Office files require users to enable macro commands (i.e., editing/content), while OneNote documents need them to click on embedded links or files.

How to avoid installation of malware?

It is essential to treat incoming emails, PMs/DMs, SMSes, and other messages with caution. Do not open attachments or links present in suspicious/irrelevant mail, as they can be harmful or infectious.

However, malware is not distributed exclusively via spam mail. Therefore, be vigilant when browsing since fake and malicious online content usually appears legitimate and innocuous.

Additionally, download only from official and verified channels. Activate and update software by using functions/tools provided by genuine developers, as illegal activation ("cracking") tools and third-party updaters may contain malware. It is paramount to have a dependable anti-virus and kept up-to-date.

Security programs must be used to run regular system scans and to remove detected threats/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 "Department Of Treasury - Compensation Funds" spam email letter:


This is Mrs Janet Yellen the secretary of Department of Treasury I am reaching out to inform you about some exciting news regarding your compensation funds. After careful review and verification, it has been determined that your compensation funds amount to an impressive sum of $8 million dollars.

Additionally, I have some further good news to share with you. As part of your compensation package, a brand new Ford F-150. has been allocated to you. The car is currently in our possession and ready to be delivered to you at your convenience.
Kindly drop
Your full name…….?
Address ……………..?
Phone number ……..?
Age ……………..?
God bless you

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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?

Regardless of any relevant details that they may include, spam emails are not personal. Cyber criminals distribute this mail in massive operations – hence, thousands of users receive identical (or incredibly similar) messages.

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

If you have provided personally identifiable or finance-related information (e.g., passport photos/scans, ID card details, credit/debit card numbers, etc.) – immediately contact the appropriate authorities. However, if you have disclosed your log-in credentials – change the passwords of all potentially exposed accounts and inform their official support without delay.

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

Opening/Reading an email poses no infection threat; 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?

Executables (.exe, .run, etc.) cause infections almost without fail once opened. However, some other formats – like documents (.doc, .xls, .pdf, .one, etc.) – may need additional actions to jumpstart malware download/installation (e.g., enabling macros, clicking embedded content, etc.).

Will Combo Cleaner remove malware infections present in email attachments?

Yes, Combo Cleaner can detect and remove almost all known malware infections. Note that since sophisticated malicious programs tend to hide deep within systems – running a complete system scan is crucial for detection.

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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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