The thieves usually request payment via wire transfers or bank deposits, but can also request gift cards in perpetrating the theft. In the schemes, criminals reach out to consumers through a variety of channels, including phone calls, email, social media and text messages. Typically, fraudsters impersonate state lotteries or national contests, including Publishers Clearing House, and when they do so, they ask the “winner” to pay taxes or fees before a prize can be awarded.
If you suspect that you may be the victim of such a scheme, the BBB advises you to use the following tools to evaluate the veracity of the claims: -Law enforcement officials do not call and award prizes.
-Consumers are urged to contact the sweepstakes company or state lottery directly to determine whether they have won a prize. Consumers who believe they have been subjected to lottery or sweepstakes fraud can contact the BBB, the Federal Trade Commission at 877-FTC-HELP, or the US Postal Inspection Service at 877-876-2455.
-You have to enter sweepstakes and lotteries to win. If you don’t remember doing so, contact authorities. -True lotteries or sweepstakes don’t ask for money. If someone wants money for taxes, themselves or a third party, they are most likely thieves.
News Highlights Business
- Financial losses from sweepstakes, lottery fraud spike, says BBB – NewsChicago
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