THE SCAM: Extra-effort lottery scam
HOW IT WORKS: The purveyors of a new lottery scam are using a full-court press to catch unsuspecting people. In this variation, consumers are called and told they've won $2.5 million in a foreign lottery, but shouldn't tell anyone. From there, the victims receive calls from a "federal tax department," two people posing as attorneys and others who tell them the offer is legitimate and how to collect the winnings. Many of these callers also request money for their services. The scam sometimes leads to a call from someone claiming to be with the FBI, who also requests money or says the victim could lose their home.
WHAT'S AT STAKE: Your money
HOW TO BEAT IT: By following up with so many calls, scammers appear to be creating a more convincing web for an unsuspecting person to fall into. But the core fact remains the same: If you didn't enter a foreign lottery, or are asked to pay anything when you win such a lottery, this come-on is a scam.
Contact Bee staff writer Ben van der Meer at firstname.lastname@example.org or 578-2331.