Protect Yourself and Report the Latest Frauds, Scams, Spams, Fakes, Identify Theft Hacks and Hoaxes
Have you received an email from "James Keegan" at "FREE LOTTO EMAIL PROMO OFFICE" telling you that "your email address won in the second category" or something similar, and to contact him to collect your winnings? It is a scam. No legitimate, legal lottery notifies winners vian email (see footnote) there is a legal business named "FreeLotto" that has a paid subscription auto-entry called "F.A.S.T.", but that is a separate story. 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 "FREE LOTTO EMAIL PROMO OFFICE".
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.
Subject: Re: Claims Verification Form
Date: Fri, 23 Mar 2007 11:08:25 -0400
FREE LOTTO EMAIL PROMO OFFICE
82 VICTORIA STREET
ATTN: Staci ,
I am Mr. James Keegan your claims officer, I wish to Congratulate you, you are a lucky person to have won this lottery.
This is a promotional draw which officially launches the new system. With funds accrued exclusively from previous draws, payouts to all winners are guaranteed and will be transferred in record time.
This correspondence officially confirms that we are in receipt of instructions relating to the payment of your lottery winnings. Please complete the form below with correct information and email back to us with a return email . Looking forward to your swift response.
Mr. James Keegan,
Tel: +44 70457 05223
Fax: +44 707 515 826
THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION SHOULD BE SUPPLIED COMPREHENSIVELY BY THE BENEFICIARY OF THE STATED FUND,FOR VERIFICATION BEFORE TRANSFER.
1.FULL NAMES OF BENEFICIARY:
3.DATE AND PLACE OF BIRTH:
5.NAME AND ADDRESS OF NEXT OF KIN:
10.TICKET NUMBER AND SERIAL NUMBER:
11. AMOUNT WON:
The options to receive your winnings are:
1. CASH PICK UP: You can come down in person to collect your funds here in the UK (CASH). You will be required to present a valid International Passport as proof of Identification amongst other documentation which will be required if you choose this option.
2. CASHIERS CHEQUE: This is In consonance with our policy in this regard, be advised that if you opt for the cashiers cheque, you will be referred to our affiliate financial Institution that you can make enquiries concerning modalities. That is to say if you opt for cashiers cheque you are to notify this office that we may forward your check per your request to the issuing bank.
I...............HEREBY DECLARE THAT THE ABOVE DATA ARE TRUE. IN CASE OF ANY UNFORSEEN CIRCUMSTANCE,MY NEXT OF KIN HAS THE RIGHT TO CLAIM MY TOTAL WINNINGS.(SUPER STANDARD AGENT) SHALL ACT AS MY AGENT IN FACILITATING THE TRANSFER OF THE TOTAL FUND TO ME. DATE--------
This email and its attachments are confidential and intended for the exclusive use of the addressee(s).This email and its attachments may also be privileged or protected by legal rules. If you have received this by mistake please let us know by reply immediately and/or destroy the email and its attachments without reading, copying or forwarding the contents.
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