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Avoiding Lottery Scams

HandelontheLaw.com Staff Writer

Wednesday, January 20, 2016



Avoiding Lottery Scams
Lottery

Con artists follow the news and pursue whatever is “hot” in order to take your money. The recent $1.6 billion Powerball lottery (which I didn’t win, by the way), is a good example. In view of the mania surrounding the recent Powerball lottery, experts issued warnings such as the one in this YouTube video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5v8SlpEQw9k

In addition, fraud experts such as the Better Business Bureau and various departments of consumer affairs issued warnings and tips for avoiding this persistent form of theft by fraud. While the fraudsters follow the hottest trends, they repeatedly use the same methods, which should be huge red flags for consumers. It seems odd that people would be taken in by these old methods but it still happens.

First, don’t buy into “shares” of lottery tickets with anyone you don’t know well.

Secondly, don’t fall for any announcements through e-mail, phone calls, snail mail or social media that inform you about winning one of the smaller prizes.

Third, be aware that you cannot win if you did not enter. If you didn’t buy a ticket or file an application for a prize, you didn’t win it or any part of it.

Fourth, never pay sums of money in order to receive a prize. Whether the sums are called “taxes” or “fees” or some other official-sounding term, don’t pay. For example, you might receive a letter congratulating you for winning, with an enclosed check to supposedly cover “taxes” or “fees” and instructions to deposit the check and send money to a third party. It’s a scam and the check is phony.

Fifth, if the person or organization notifying you seems legitimate, verify their credibility through an independent source. The con artist may give you a source for verification but that source will be in on the scam. Use an independent source such as the Better Business Bureau’s Scam Tracker, accessible here: https://www.bbb.org/scamtracker/us/

Sixth, if you are contacted by a scammer, report him/her/it to:
- The Better Business Bureau’s Scam Tracker here: https://www.bbb.org/scamtracker/us/
- Your local police department; and
- Your state’s attorney general, who can be found here: http://www.naag.org/naag/attorneys-general/whos-my-ag.php


DO’S AND DON’TS

DON’T buy into “shares” of lottery tickets with anyone you don’t know well.

DON’T fall for any announcements through e-mail, phone calls, snail mail or social media that inform you about winning one of the smaller prizes.

DO be aware that you cannot win if you did not enter.

DON’T pay sums of money in order to receive a prize.

DO verify a person’s or organization’s credibility through an independent source, such as the Better Business Bureau’s Scam Tracker, accessible here: https://www.bbb.org/scamtracker/us/

DO report scams to:
- The Better Business Bureau’s Scam Tracker here: https://www.bbb.org/scamtracker/us/
- Your local police department; and
- Your state’s attorney general, who can be found here: http://www.naag.org/naag/attorneys-general/whos-my-ag.php

By Kathy Catanzarite


Source: Kathy Catanzarite - Handelonthelaw.com Writer

Note from HandelontheLaw.com: This article is to be used as an educational guide only and should not be interpreted as a legal consultation. Readers of this article are advised to seek an attorney if a legal consultation is needed. Laws may vary by state and are subject to change, thus the accuracy of this information can not be guaranteed. Readers act on this information solely at their own risk. Neither the author, handelonthelaw.com, or any of its affiliates shall have any liability stemming from this article.





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