Lottery scams are one of the most common types of scams.  Scammers cheat people out of millions of dollars each year by tricking their victims into sending money to the scammers after being told that they have won a lottery, but are required to pay fees or taxes in order to collect their prize. It is hard to win any lottery. It is impossible to win one that you have not even entered and yet scam artists, the only criminals we refer to as artists have found that it is extremely lucrative to scam people by convincing them that they have won various lotteries.

Most lottery scams involve the victims being told that they need to pay taxes or administrative fees directly to the lottery sponsor; however no legitimate lottery requires you to do so.  As with many effective scams, the pitch of the scammer seems legitimate. Income taxes are due on lottery winnings, but with legitimate lotteries they are either deducted from the lottery winnings before you receive your prize or you are responsible for paying the taxes directly to the IRS. No legitimate lottery collects taxes on behalf of the IRS from lottery winners.  Other times, the scammer tell the “winners” that in order to collect their prizes, they need to pay administrative fees. Often, the victims are told to send the fees back to the scammer by prepaid gift cards or Green Dot MoneyPak cards. Prepaid cards are a favorite of scammers because they are the equivalent of sending cash. They are impossible to stop or trace. Again, no legitimate lottery requires you to pay administrative fees in order to claim your prize

Today’s impressive lottery scam starts with an email, a copy of which is reproduced below.  This particular email was forwarded to us at by a Scamicide reader.  I have removed the email address to which you are asked to respond when you receive this email, however, I left in the link to their very impressive, but flawed website.  It is obvious a lot of effort went into creating the website for this scam.  The spelling and grammatical errors have been left in the email.  These types of errors are a good sign that the lottery is a scam.

“Congratulations! Your name have been selected through Electronic Balloting System on our POKER LOTTERY with the Collaboration of the International Monetary Fund commission organisation  set up to help people financially with money all over the world for poverty alliviation.  We selected people every Month without the winner’s applying. The cash-prizes should be claim within 1 week, do not hesitate to email us on for your claim or visit our website.

Poker Lottery Team
Executive Winning Claim Officer”

As I have often told you, it is difficult to win a lottery you have entered.  It is impossible to win one that you have not even entered.  You should always be skeptical about being told that you have won a lottery you never entered.  It is also important to remember that it is illegal to play foreign lotteries except when you are actually present in the other country.  While it is true that income taxes are owed on lottery winnings, legitimate lotteries never collect tax money from winners.  They either deduct the taxes from the winnings or leave it up to the winners to pay their taxes directly to the IRS.  You also should never pay a fee to collect a legal lottery prize.

This particular lottery scam ties a lot of official sounding entities together, but in a way that makes no sense whatsoever and while the International Monetary Fund is a legitimate organization, it is not involved in anyway with lotteries.  Further the reference in the email to the “International Monetary Fund commission organization” is ridiculous.  The website for this scam looks quite professional, but is again filled with grammatical errors, spelling errors and obvious misrepresentations.  Often the poor grammar and spelling can be attributed to the scammers not being speakers of English as their primary language.

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