- Written by Federal Trade Commission Consumer Information
- Published: 02 August 2018
Here’s how they work:
You get a card, a call, or an email telling you that you won! Maybe it’s a trip or a prize, a lottery or a sweepstakes. The person calling is so excited and can’t wait for you to get your winnings.
But here’s what happens next:
They tell you there’s a fee, some taxes, or customs duties to pay. And then they ask for your credit card number or bank account information, or they ask you to wire money.
Either way, you lose money instead of winning it. You don’t ever get that big prize. Instead, you get more requests for money, and more promises that you won big.
Here’s what you can do:
Keep your money – and your information – to yourself.
Never share your financial information with someone who contacts you and claims to need it. And never wire money to anyone who asks you to.
Pass this information on to a friend.
You probably throw away these kinds of scams or hang up when you get these calls. But you probably know someone who could use a friendly reminder.
Please report scams
If you spot a scam, please report it to the Federal Trade Commission.
- Call the FTC at 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357) or TTY 1-866-653-4261
- Make a report online
Your complaint can help protect other people. By filing a complaint, you can help the FTC’s investigators identify the scammers and stop them before they can get someone’s hard-earned money. It really makes a difference.
Want to know more?
Article reprinted from the Federal Trade Commission website.