The Windsor Police Financial Crime Unit would like to remind the public of the “Lottery Scam”. The scam usually involves an unsolicited call, email, text or pop-up screen on your computer advising that you have won money or a prize. This should immediately raise your suspicions and doubts as you cannot be chosen as a random winner if you haven’t placed an entry. They try to entice you with a prize and trick you into giving banking and other personal information to claim your prize. The scammers will also try to tell you there are costs involved in claiming your prize, which is another characteristic of many known fraud scams.
In one recently reported incident a local resident received a phone call and was advised that they won 2.5 million but they had to pay a fee for the cost of shipping and taxes. After paying she was advised the prize increased to several million dollars but there was additional fees, taxes, costs for briefcase, final delivery fees, etc. There were several more exchanges and transactions with the fraudster, resulting in a loss of over $24,000 for the supposed prize money. They eventually spoke to a friend who advised that it was a scam and they reported the incident to police.
The Windsor Police Service reminds the public to be vigilant when receiving unsolicited emails, text messages or phone calls. You should not have to pay money to receive money or a prize and if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Please have conversations with your friends and family who may be more vulnerable to this type of scam.
The fraudsters often reside overseas, making it extremely difficult to trace and identify those involved in this scam. Prevention is the best defence.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Windsor Police at 519-255-6700 ext. 4330, Crime Stoppers anonymously at 519-258-8477 (TIPS) or online at www.catchcrooks.com