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Customs duty email scam targeting the public

10.02am 14 February 2020

We’ve been advised that some people are receiving requests for customs duty payments on shipments. The requests arrive by email and indicate they’re being sent from New Zealand Customs.

A sample of the fake emails that are currently in circulation is shown below:

Email scam sample

Such emails are scams. People are advised to check for fraud indicators before making a payment -  or contact Customs to check whether a payment is required or not. 

Details that show an email is from a scammer include:

  • Not from a New Zealand Customs email address, i.e.
  • No personalised greeting
  • Does not include an specific dollar amount, or emails ask for percentage payment
  • Includes no specific reference numbers or Customs client codes or other identifiers
  • The link points to a non-Customs website or email address
  • Strangely worded, lacking details or incorrect grammar, punctuation mistakes and lacking specific details
  • Lack of information regarding the sender or contact details not provided in the email.