Although the country of Nigeria comes to mind when we think about countries from which many scams originate, as I warned you in my “scam of the day” of April 18, 2012, Jamaica has become a hotbed of phony lottery scams. This week the Jamaican Assistant Commmissioner of Police gave a speech in which he indicated that lottery scams have become the most significant contributer to an increased murder rate in the St. James parish of Jamaica. On the same day of Commissioner Williams’ speech, Jamaican police announced the arrest of six Jamaicans for scamming Americans through a telemarketing lottery scam.
You cannot win a contest you have not entered. You don’t have to pay fees to receive winnings in legitimate contests and lotteries. Another common lottery scam is when you are told that they have to collect the income taxes on the prize. This is a scam too. Either the taxes are deduted from your prize or you pay them directly to the IRS. No contest sponsor receives a payment from you for taxes. The Jamaican scam has preyed partiularly on the elderly who should never trust anyone on the telephone telling them that they have won a contest.