Protect Yourself and Report the Latest Frauds, Scams, Spams, Fakes, Identify Theft Hacks and Hoaxes
Have you received an email from "Mrs. Susan Dickson" at "Universal Finance Trust Ltd Affiliated to Euro National Lottery" telling you that "your email address won in the 1st category" or something similar, and to contact "Mr. Donald Weiss" to collect your winnings? Is it a lottery? A sweepstakes? A promotion? You don't remember buying a ticket and it says "your email address" won! It is a scam. No legitimate, legal lottery notifies winners vian email (see footnote) The scammers may change the names and details, but it is still a scam!
Below is another example of a fake lottery; this email claims to be from the "Universal Finance Trust Ltd Affiliated to Euro National Lottery".
Although the most important clue is that no legitimate lottery will ever email a winner, there are many other signs that this is a fraud. We have highlighted some of these in the email below, not the least of which are:
Email address ballot: There is no such thing as a "computer ballot system" or "computer email draw". No one, not even Microsoft has a database of email addresses of the type or magnitude they suggest.
Terrible spelling, punctuation, syntax and grammar - Scammers apparently don't know how to use spell checkers. We assume they dropped out of school before that class. They use almost excessive and random CapItaLiZAtion. They often can't even spell "February" or know that "22th" ought to be "22nd". These scammers usually write at the 3rd grade level. Being non-native English speakers, they also often get first names and surnames (last names reversed), so you will frequently see names like "Mr. SMITH JAMES.", instead of "Mr. James Smith", along with the peculiar usage of periods (full stops) and spaces or the lack thereof. Real lotteries also proofread their emails and look and read more professional.
Using free email account: The scammer is writing to you from a FREE email account (Yahoo, Hotmail, Excite, AIM, Gmail, etc.). Don't you think a real organization would use its own email, its own domain and website?
Keep Confidential - Real lotteries THRIVE on publicity - they don't want you to keep anything secret - the publicity causes people to buy more tickets. there is NO risk of "double claiming" because they can validate where the ticket numbers were sold. The scammer want you to keep quiet because they don't want the police or ConsumerFraudreporting to hear about them! It should read: "For our own security, you are advised to keep your winning information confidential until we have finished scamming you!"
Email notification: NO REAL LOTTERY SENDS AN EMAIL TO NOTIFY WINNERS. Period. Full-stop. End of story. There mere fact ALONE that you received an email saying you won a lottery is proof that it is a scam.
Here is a typical scam lottery winning notification.
Universal Finance Trust Ltd
Affiliated to Euro National Lottery
Euro National House: Havelet, St Peter Port, GY1 1BA. UNITED KINGDOM
Ref: UK/9420X3/55 Batch: 045/06/ZY323
RE: AWARD WINNING NOTIFICATION
We happily announce to you the draw of the EURO NATIONAL LOTTERY, online Sweepstakes International program held three days ago from the day of this notice.
Your e-mail address attached to ticket number: 55475600545145 with Serial number 5368/03 drew the lucky numbers: 11-19-29-47-59(bonus ball no.666), which subsequently won you the lottery in the Ist category. You have therefore been approved to claim a total sum of £1,200,000.00(One million, two hundred thousand pounds sterlings) in cash credited to file UFT/9123118307/06. This is from a total cash prize of £2,400,000.00 shared amongst the first two (2) jackpot lucky winners in this category.
All participants for the online version were selected randomly from Worldwide Websites through computer draw system, and extracted from over 100,000 unions, associations, and corporate bodies that are listed online which are America, Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, Middle East, and Oceania. Please note that your lucky winning number falls within our Europe booklet representative office in Europe. In view of this, you have therefore been approved to claim a total sum of £1,200,000(One million, two hundred thousand pounds sterling) which will be released to you by any of our payment offices in Europe.
Our Europe agents will immediately commence the process to facilitate the release of your funds as soon as you contact them. For security reasons, you are advised to keep your winning information confidential until your claims is processed and your money duly remitted to you. For your prize winning claims, kindly contact our claims agent:
Mr. Donald Weiss. Tel: +44 7031922334 Fax: +44 870 068 7911 Email: email@example.com
For express processing of your claims, please provide the following information clearly written either by email or fax.
1. Your full name
2. Winning Reference numbers
3. batch numbers.
4. Alternative email account 5. Your country of resident.
This is part of our precautionary measure to avoid double claiming and unwarranted abuse of this program. Please be warned.
For further clarification/verification of your claims, Please contact our claims agent to intimate you of the procedure to redeem your funds.
Good luck and congratulation from the entire staff of the UNIVERSAL FINANCE TRUST LTD FOR EURO NATIONAL LOTTERY.
Mrs. Susan Dickson.
(Online coordinator for Universal Finance Trust Ltd, Uk)
* Re: emails of winnings. We know of only ONE exception in the world to this rule - and if you bought a ticket from them, you would know it, and would not be questioning it.