Police Issue Warning Over UK Lottery Scam
Last Updated: Friday 5th September 2014, 12:20 pm
Police in South Derbyshire, England, have been warning residents about a lottery scam currently in operation which informs potential victims that they have won a life-changing sum of money. Police first became aware of the scam after receiving several calls from the general public.
The scammers send out both letters and emails to inform residents about winning a large sum of money in an online or overseas lottery draw. The victims are then asked to keep their winnings a secret and are instructed to contact the scammers, who falsely claim to be lottery officials, so that they can start the claims procedure.
The goal of the scam is to obtain personal information, such as bank and passport details, in order to steal the victim’s identity and money. In addition, the fraudsters have asked their victims to pay a ‘fee’ to have their non-existent winnings ‘released’. If the target pays the requested fee, the scammers will continue to ask for more money, each time giving a reason as to why the winnings cannot be released until another payment is made.
Unfortunately, some residents have fallen victim to the scam and have given out their personal details which has then given the scammers access to the victim’s bank accounts.
Detective Constable Julie Wheeldon, from the East Midlands Fraud and Financial Investigation Unit, has spoken about this scam and has urged lottery players to remember that you can only win a lottery prize if you have entered a draw. Lottery officials will never contact you out of the blue to inform you of a win - the only way to win is to purchase a ticket, or register your participation, and then match a winning combination of numbers. It is then up to a legitimate prize winner to claim their prize. In addition, lottery officials will never ask for any form of payment to release your winnings.
National-Lottery.com would like to advise readers in South Derbyshire and across the UK to remain vigilant for potential lottery scams as they are varied and abundant. For further information on internet fraud, please visit www.actionfraud.police.uk.