Have you ever opened up an email or text and caught a message saying you’ve just won an online lottery? If you have, don’t celebrate too early—as it could be just another lottery scam. As the digital world advances, so do the cunning methods of scammers. In this guide, we’ll be tackling the whats and don’ts of online lottery scams; made to shield yourself from falling victim to them.
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What are Lottery Scams?
Lottery scams are deceptive schemes that manipulate people by falsely claiming they have won a lottery. These scams often involve sophisticated methods to extract personal information, money, or both from their targets.
It’s important to know the difference of a real winning lottery notification to that of one created by scammers. Keep on reading below to find out their differences so you can keep you and your finances safe from land-based and online lottery scams.
Is It Safe to Play Online Lottery?
As long as you are sticking to reputable lottery websites, you should be safe. 12Bet offers one of the most secure types of lottery games from the lotto to the famous Keno. Aside from 12Bet, we recommend participating in other legitimate lotto sites. This could be from one by a famous provider or initiated by your local government.
A good rule of thumb is to do your own research and gauge a site’s legitimacy. Avoid playing into lottery sites blindly and purchasing tickets at once. Remember, if it hasn’t got clear cut terms and conditions, it is likely not a reputable site. Make sure to keep to trustworthy lottery websites to keep you and your finances safe from lottery scams.
Most Common Lottery Scams
Winning a Lottery You Never Entered
It goes without saying: how can you have won the online lottery if you haven’t entered one in the first place? One of the more prevalent lottery scams involves receiving notifications via email, text, or phone about winning an online lottery you never participated in. Scammers exploit this by creating a fake lottery winning message. They’ll also build a sense of excitement and urgency, which would entice individuals to respond impulsively.
Advanced Fee Payments
No online lottery will ever ask you for money just to claim a prize. It’s about as suspicious as any job that’ll ask you to cough up cash just to apply for them: it’s not legitimate. Scammers may demand advance fees or payments before you claim your winnings. Make sure to keep this in mind the next time lottery scammers pressure you to pay up to claim.
Paying Money to Increase Chances
While the prospect may seem tempting—after all, who doesn’t want a chance to win more?—don’t fall for it! Lottery scammers may persuade victims to pay additional money to win more than what they already “won”. As one of the most dangerous lottery scams, these claims are baseless and are solely for extorting money from victims. Once an online lottery is won, there is no guarantee to increase any more than what you have already won.
Asking For Personal and Banking Information
Unless it is from a legitimate online lottery site, never provide your personal or banking information. Aside from being one of the biggest lottery scams, it’s a phishing method done by other scammers to steal your identity.
Always transact with the legitimate website of the online lottery you won from. Additionally, make sure to check the terms and conditions to ensure the security of your information.
Pressures You to “Act Now”
Lottery scammers will often create a false sense of urgency, pressuring victims to act quickly by clicking a link. While online lotteries do provide you with deadlines, they’ll never pressure you. Additionally, legitimate online lotteries are not likely to threaten you with the loss of your winnings if you don’t respond at once.
If you find that your notification is pressuring you to “act now” or lose the chance of claiming your prize, it is a scam.
Contacts You Through Social Media
No lottery, whether online or land-based, will ever correspond with you through social media. It is unofficial, unprofessional, and a huge security risk—especially where large amounts of money are concerned. If you ever receive a direct message through your Facebook or Instagram accounts about winning the lottery, it is a scam.
How to Avoid Online Lottery Scams
Do Not Respond
The best and safest way to avoid these common lottery scams is to simply ignore them. To act on it by responding will not only entice these scammers to bother you but may also pose a security risk for you, their victim. Legitimate lotteries will never notify you through unofficial channels like social media or send unsolicited messages with several demands.
At 12Bet, if you ever win the lotto, we will only notify you through the email you used to sign up at the site and through your account. When in doubt, always double-check the sources of your emails and the website they’re asking you to click.
Additionally, try to search for any rules indicated on the email or the official website of the lottery. Legitimate lotteries will always provide transparent information to the public. Furthermore, it is good to do thorough research on any past winners of the lottery you have entered. This will ensure its legitimacy and give you peace of mind when claiming your prize.
Look for Typos and Unprofessionalism
Lottery scams will often contain incorrect grammar, typo errors, and unprofessional sentences—all in the rush to entice victims to claim their “prize”. A few key things to look out for in particular are:
- Multiple exclamation marks after the word “Congratulations”. Additionally, far too many mentions of the word in succession throughout the message.
- Incorrect grammar or the message feels written in a rush.
- The email or subject title is written in all capital letters.
- Refuses to provide you full details beyond the amount “won” or more information on the lottery’s terms and conditions.
- Lottery scam messages may contain fake written checks. If you encounter a check attached to your message, verify it with the bank.
- A winning message sent from unofficial domains is one of the most common lottery scams. If you notice that the email address comes from a free email, such as Gmail or Yahoo, consider it a red flag.
Never Pay Money to Claim a Prize
If the “lottery” is asking you to pay money upfront to claim a prize, it’s a more common scam than you think. Never provide your banking information to these kinds of messages, as they will be a security risk for you and your finances. Remember, lotteries and sweepstakes are free to enter and win, and will never ask you to pay first before claiming.
Shield Your Finances Against Online Lottery Scammers
In an era where a single message holds the promise of unexpected fortune, caution becomes our most valuable asset. Online lottery scams are more common in the digital world, capitalizing on the allure of an easy win. With this guide, we hope you learned useful information on how to avoid lottery scammers’ deceptive tactics.
The key lies in discernment—knowing the difference between legitimate wins and deceitful schemes. Always stay vigilant by verifying the legitimacy of the winnings and resist the urgencies of suspicious messages. Wisdom also prevails in ignoring unsolicited claims, ensuring your financial and personal security.
Your financial security is in your hands—so make sure to always defend it against the deceitful tactics of online lottery scams.