This Expert Shares Three Top Tips on How to Avoid Lotto Cons
A new scam is hitting lottery players nationwide in which callers claim someone has won a "special drawing" associated with the Mega Millions lottery.
The scammers try to get you to provide money and personal information in order to get the prize. The scam has also been reported as an email requesting personal information from the supposed lottery "winner."
Officials from several state lotteries and the Department of Consumer Protection say to think twice before giving out any personal information over the phone or email.
If you're suspicious about a call or email you've received, lotto expert and 7 time lottery game grand prize winner Richard Lustig has these tips:
- Never give out personal info like your social security number or bank account routing number over the phone or in an email to someone claiming to be a lottery official. "I've won dozens of lottery prizes, and have never once been asked for that sort of information from lottery officials. If you hit a really big jackpot, you'll need to go to the lottery office to fill out the appropriate paperwork and pick up your check."
- Don't assume that because you've played, or even won in the past, that lottery officials will contact you asking for info. "These scammers are counting on the fact that out of every 100 calls or emails they send, one of the recipients will be a lottery player, who will assume that they're in some big database of winners. In most cases, state and national lotteries wait for winners to come forward...they don't even try to trace them. People want to believe that they've won, and they get "lotto fever" and give away their personal information before thinking things through."
- Watch out for your elderly parents and friends. "Older folks often aren't as technologically savvy as younger people, so they can be more easily tricked by cleverly worded emails and fast talking con artists on the phone. A good rule of thumb is that if someone says they're from the lottery and they need money from you before they'll send you your "winnings", it's a scam. Hang up on them, and delete their email, or forward it to the proper authorities."
[Richard Lustig is America' s foremost expert on winning lottery methods. He has appeared on CBS Sunday Morning, ABC World News Tonight, The Today Show, NBC Nightly News, CNN, Fox and Friends, MSNBC, The Rachael Ray Show, The Daily Buzz, The New York Post, Sirius/XM, Good Day Australia, The Orlando Sentinel, Woman's World and dozens of other media outlets, and has even been featured in Ripley's Believe It Or Not. Find out more about Richard at www.winninglotterymethod.com.]