|Posted: Wed 10 Nov 2004 02:40 Post subject: LOTTERY SCAMS
Lottery scams usually begin with a phone call, email or letter saying that you have won a large amount of money or other wonderful prizes, but a filing fee will need to be paid before the prize will be released to you. Some victims are even given an actual ticket . . . but it turns out to be a counterfeit.
How to Protect Yourself
If you do not remember entering a lottery or contest, it is probably a scam
Never buy a lottery ticket from anyone other than an official lottery retailer displaying official logos and signs.
Don't redeem a lottery ticket for someone you do not know.
Never accept a collect call from someone claiming to be from the lottery. The lottery does not call collect.
Don't give your credit card number over the phone to anyone promising lottery prizes or memberships.
Never believe anyone who guarantees you will win a lottery prize. There is no guarantee.
Don't try to redeem a lottery ticket from a person. Tickets can be redeemed only at official retailers or lottery offices.
Warning Signs: That You Are Being Scammed
You have been asked to keep the Lottery win a secret. It warns you not to make any of this public and in fact, if you breach any confidentiality, you'll lose your winnings. (No legitimate Lottery would say this to you, they welcome publicity for winners)
You have been asked to supply sensitive personal information (like bank account numbers, social security number, etc.) or personal documents (passport, driver's license).
You have received official-looking documents by email. (real Lotteries dont do this)
The processing fee is usually the way to identify these scams. In some cases a 'processing fee' is mentioned in the initial 'win' communication. However, some fraudsters wait until the 'win' recipient is sufficiently interested before asking for money.
You have been referred by email to a security company, banker, or barrister who is in control of these Lottery winning's and, claims to be releasing them to you.
Your contact writes in broken English or disjointed sentences, sometimes changing writing styles from CAPITALS to lowercase text.
Up front fees before the release of the 'jackpot' are usually justified as insurance costs, processing fee's, claim verification charge or a fee stipulated by a regulatory authority. There is nothing in any Lottery rules, nor will there ever be, that requires a prize winner to make any payment in order to claim a prize.
How A Typical Lottery Scam Works.
First you get a Letter/E-mail/Phonecall from a fake Lottery.
This advises you of a major win in a recent draw of an overseas lottery (often based in Canada, Spain or the Netherlands). Those are the most common locations, although there are many fake Lotteries from other countries. The Lotteries operate as an advanced fee fraud. The lottery winnings DO NOT exist.
What happens if I reply to the Lottery letter?
If you contact the lottery operator, you will be asked to provide details of bank accounts and confirmation of your identity. Once interest is shown in collecting winnings, the lottery operators will ask for money in advance to pay costs relating to administration, foreign currency charges or security. This request should send alarm bells ringing as legitimate lotteries do not ask for funds in advance of payout - their operating costs are not deducted from individual prizes.
What to do if you receive a letter?
Remember the following rules if you receive a notification of prize winnings so you won't be caught out:
1. You can't win a prize in a lottery you haven't bought or been given a ticket for.
2. Legitimate lotteries don't ask for funds in advance of paying out prize money.
3. Never provide personal identity information to a company or person you do not know.
Be advised that these scammer's may have links with Al-Qeada and other terrorist organisations, they are very extremely dangerous people and we advise you to cease contact immediately. See this link about Nigerian email scams linked to terrorism:
Al-Qaeda, ETA en PKK are copying Nigerian scams to fund terrorism
Use this link for more info about Dutch, Belgian, British, and Swiss Lottery Scams
If you are Dutch Lottery Scam victim, contact:
Dutch police Website: Dutch Police Service
Email Dutch Police: email@example.com
If you are United Kingdom Lottery Scam victim, contact:
Metropolitan Police Webiste: Metropolitan Police Fraud Alert
Email Metropolitan Police: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are an American victim of a Lottery scam, contact:
U.S. Secret Service Financial Crimes Division
1800 G St., NW,
Washington, DC 20223
U.S. Secret Service Website: US Secret Service