You receive a phone call, email, or letter stating you have won a lottery or sweepstakes. Scammers require you to pay a fee to receive the prize to avoid taxes or additional fees, or may even threaten to report you to the IRS or police if you don’t make the requested payment.
Tip: Legitimate lotteries pay taxes directly to the government rather than being reimbursed from winners’ proceeds. It is also against U.S. law to play a foreign lottery.
ONLINE LOAN SCAMS
Beware of loan offers on social media or online ads. It could be a scammer impersonating a loan company who is looking to empty your bank account once you share your financial data. Watch out for warning signs, such as the lender demanding a prepaid debit card or pressuring you to act immediately. When applying for a loan, go to a trusted website instead of clicking on a link in an ad.
Tip: Research the lender or loan broker online using rating agencies, online feedback, state and federal agencies like the FTC or a state Attorney General.