IE Voice Staff |
The California Attorney General (AG) advised consumers to be on the alert for an apparent “Strike Five Mega Lotto” winnings scam in which an authentic looking but bogus cashier’s check arrives in the mail with your name on it.
The accompanying letter says the enclosed $3,550 check from a “Wells Fargo & Company Issuer” is provided to “help you make the payment” of the $3,300 insurance/processing fee required before the big funds “you have won” will be paid to you.
Supposedly you get to keep the extra $250 for “your trouble.”
Unfortunately, consumers falling for this lotto-winnings scam will find themselves becoming losers in the end. “You not only will have to repay your bank the entire amount of the bogus check you just cashed since the check was drawn upon a non-existent bank account and your bank could not collect the money it just gave you; you likely will never again see the money you wired for the so-called insurance/processing fee,” the AG advised.
So, you will lose the money you withdrew from your bank and the money you sent away!
The “Strike Five Mega Lotto” scam is reported surfacing in New Mexico. The New Mexico Attorney General’s Office found that the phone number listed to activate the claim for the prize in the “Strike Five Mega Lotto” (1-647-219-1496) originates from Toronto, Ontario in Canada; the purported company mailing address 2200 5th Avenue, Seattle, Washington, belongs to a Ramada Inn in downtown Seattle; and calling the phone number listed in the letter results in a recorded message saying that the mailbox is full.
This scam appears to be the latest twist on familiar schemes known by such names as Canadian Sweepstakes and Nigerian Check Scams. In these scams, consumers receive a check to be cashed that looks real and are asked to pay a processing fee to cover handling and insurance, or to provide a partial refund of the check amount since the check amount was incorrect. Since the check is bogus, the consumer is simply taken for the money.
Consumers who come across these types of scams can file a complaint with the Attorney General’s Office.