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FraudSMART Alert on Foreign Lottery Scam

Friday 7 February 2020 – FraudSMART is today warning consumers to beware of a foreign lottery scam which has successfully conned several victims out of substantial sums of money.

Key Scam Detail

The ‘El Gordo’ lottery scam sees victims receive an email telling them they have won an international lottery but is actually trying to obtain their bank details. The email, which is accompanied by a ‘winning certificate’, tells the victim they have won a large amount of money and in order to claim this prize they must contact a specified number with their bank account details  where the money will be lodged. Click here for an example of the ‘winning certificate’ being distributed in this scam.

Key Advice:

  • Remember it is highly unlikely that you will win a large unexpected prize or inherit money you were not expecting.
  • As a basic rule, if it looks too good to be true, it probably is.
  • Never respond to any contact that promises lots of money or easy money for helping a stranger to move funds.
  • Never give away personal information, bank account details or security details such as you PIN or online password to anyone.
  • Be cautious of any communication that presses you to act ‘now’. Criminals frequently try to get you to act quickly so you don’t have time to think or confirm their legitimacy.
  • Never give money to receive money i.e. send money for postage, insurance, fees etc. until you have fully and independently checked out the legitimacy of the offer.
  • Do not send money, give a credit card or bank account number, or have a cheque picked up by courier in order to receive money until you have fully and independently checked out the legitimacy of the offer.