Protect Yourself and Report the Latest Frauds, Scams, Spams, Fakes, Identify Theft Hacks and Hoaxes
Have you received an email from "Mr. Ashley Brown (Co-coordinator)" at "CASH-OUT LOTTO BV" telling you that "your email address won in the second category" or something similar, and to contact "Mr. James Howard" to collect your winnings? 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 the example of the fake email scam (the email is the scam, not any persons or companies named in the email) claiming to be from the "CASH-OUT LOTTO BV".
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.
"No tickets were sold": You care to explain where the money comes from? Perhaps the lottery money fairy? Why would a lottery give away money to "email address randomly selected by a computer ballot draw system"? This is CLEARLY nonsense: you MUST, repeat MUST buy a ticket to have a chance of winning any lottery!
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. Names are usually in all capital letters for some reason known only to these illiterate criminals. 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 it's own email, it's 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.
Subject: Congratulation you have won UK national lottery
Date: Wed, 23 Apr 2008 00:13:20 -0400
CASH-OUT LOTTO BV
CASH-OUT PLAZA, SUITE 1102A
15page Court, Marry Streets,
Balsal Heath, Br12,
England. Tel: +447031914512, +447045753675
INTERNATIONAL PROMOTIONS/PRICE AWARD DEPARTMENT.
Ref: ILP/HW 47509/02
Winning no: 11 13 26 34 44 48
ELECTRONIC EMAIL AWARD WINNING NOTIFICATION
AWARD PRESENTATION CENTER: UK
Dear lucky winner,
We are delighted to inform you of the result of the E-mail address ballot lottery draw of the cash-out lotto by international programme, which took place recently this Month. This is a computer generated lottery of Internet users using email addresses for draws. This lotto draw is fully based on an electronic selection of winners using their e-mail addresses from different World Wide Web (www) sites. Your e-mail address attached to ticket number: 275-189-657-23-05 with Serial number 8756-05 drew the lucky numbers and bonus ball number which subsequently won you the lottery in the 2nd category. You have therefore been approved to claim a total sum of US$1,000,000.00 (ONE MILLION U.S DOLLARS) in cash credit file ref: ILP/HW 47509/02. This is from the total cash prize of US$10,000,000.00 (TEN MILLION U.S DOLLARS), shared amongst the first Ten (10) lucky winners in this category. All participant were selected randomly through a computer balloting system drawn from Nine hundred thousand E-mail addresses from Canada, Australia, United States, Asia, Europe, Middle Eat, and Oceania as part of our international promotions programme which is conducted annually. This Lottery is being promoted and sponsored by a conglomerate of Multinational companies as part of their social responsibility to the citizens in the communities where they have operational base. Further more your details(e-mail address) falls within our European representative office in united Kingdom, as indicated in your play coupon and your prize of US$1 000,000.00 will be released to you from a FINANCAL SECURITY COMPANY IN LONDON where your prize money is been deposited.
We hope with part of your prize, you will participate in our end of year high stakes for US$1.3 Billion international draw. Our agent will immediately commence the process to facilitate the release of your funds as soon as you contact him.
HOW TO CLAIM YOUR PRIZE: Simply contact our fiducially Agent Mr. James Howard,
At (email@example.com ) to file for your claim.
YOUR FULL DATA FOR CLAIM:
FULL NAME: ..
REFERENCE NUMBER: .
WINNING NUMBER: ..
This is part of our precautionary measure to avoid double claiming and unwarranted abuse of this programme by some unscrupulous elements, equally to guard against non participant or unofficial personnel taking undue advantage of this programme, Note that, all winnings MUST be claimed by a STIPULATED TIME; otherwise all funds will be returned as Unclaimed and eventually be reabsorbed into our next lucky dip sweepstakes.
NOTE: For security reasons, we advice all winners to keep their winning information confidential from the public until your claim is processed and your prize money remitted/released to you. This is to avoid double claiming of your prize money.
Congratulations once again on your winnings.
Mr. Ashley Brown (Co-coordinator)
PLEASE DO NOT REPLY TO THIS OFFICE, MAKE SURE YOU CONTACT YOUR CLAIMS AGENT ABOVE.ALSO MAKE SURE YOU SEND DOWN YOUR PHONE AND FAX NUMBERS TO YOUR CLAIMS AGENT FOR EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION.
ANY BREACH OF CONFIDENTIALITY ON THE PART OF THE WINNERS WILL
RESULT TO DISQUALIFICATION. EQUALLY, NOTEWORTHY IS THE REGULATION THAT PEOPLE BELOW EIGHTEEN YEARS OF AGE ARE INELIGIBLE TO PARTICIPATE.
CHIEF SPONSORS; MICROSOFT CORPORATION UK. MICROSOFT CORPORATION AFRICA, MICROSOFT CORPORATION USA, MICROSOFT CORPORATION ASIA.
© 2008 CASH OUT LOTTO BV. All Rights Reserved.
* 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 used their safegaurds.