Masks from China now arriving in mailboxes, receivers say they never ordered them

Masks from China appearing in mailboxes, receivers say they never ordered

First seeds were being sent to people who didn’t order them, now packages of masks and other trinkets are appearing in mailboxes.

Across the country, there are reports that people are receiving masks with return addresses originating in China.

It has happened to Cheryl Treadwell in Montgomery, Alabama, WSFA reported.

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Bridget Zimmerman in Gibson, Georgia, did too, WRDW reported.

Shan Sharp in Clearwater, Florida, found a box from Shanghai, China, complete with her phone number, WFLA reported.

Packages have even been sent to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

But why? And how are the shippers getting information from people who have not bought anything from them?

First the why?

There are a few reasons you may see a package in your mailbox that you did not order.

“There are scammers who will send items to unsuspecting customers and then come back later on and try to collect money for those packages as if they owed something for them,” Tony Robinson from the Postal Inspection Service told WSFA.

Robinson also said it could be a different scam where you did buy something but a seller uses a third party to ship and they send what Robinson called “trinkets” instead of the items you ordered, WSFA reported.

It may be a case of brushing where sellers based in China get your name and address and send items to help their ratings on online retailers. The sellers then post the reviews in the receiver’s name, KHOU reported.

Usually, the items sent are lightweight and cheap, WFLA reported.

What to do?

What should you do if you receive an unsolicited package?

First, the Federal Trade Commission says change your passwords for all sites on which you shop, WFLA reported.

Second, WRDW suggested throwing the item away.

The FTC said if someone tries to get you to pay, don’t. You don’t owe money for something you didn’t order, WRDW reported.

Third, don’t open it and decline the item, WSFA reported.

Finally, report it by either going to ftc.gov/complaint or calling 877-876-2455.

FILE PHOTO: First mysterious seeds, now packages of masks are being delivered to people who haven't placed an order.
FILE PHOTO: First mysterious seeds, now packages of masks are being delivered to people who haven't placed an order. (Mint Images/Getty Images)