International Lottery Scams
Beware of International Lottery Scams
Have you ever received an e-mail or a letter in the mail with an announcement that you have won something that seems too good to be true? Well, take another look, because it probably is!
How Lottery Scams Work
In most cases, you’ll receive an unsolicited letter, telling you that you have been selected as the winner of an international lottery – usually British, Canadian, or Australian – and that you are entitled to a large sum of money. Attached to the letter is an “official” check made payable to you, which
you are instructed to deposit in your bank account. They also require that you must pay upfront "processing fees" by wiring money overseas or depositing money in a phony bank account. Unfortunately, the check you received in the mail was fraudulent, so you’ll be out that money, plus any money you send to cover the fees!
How to spot Lottery Scams
- Think logically. If you haven’t purchased a lottery ticket how could you win?
- Was the letter or e-mail unsolicited?
- Are you required to pay a fee in order to claim your prize?
- Do they instruct you to send payment to a foreign country?
- Is the letter or e-mail awkwardly written?
What to Do if You Receive One of These Scams
If you are suspicious that you have received a lottery scam, ignore it. Don’t reply to the e-mail or call the number in the letter because once you respond to one promotion your name will be placed on lists for similar scams. You should also report the scam to the Better Business Bureau or the Attorney General.