By now everyone is aware that a single winning ticket for the 1.48 billion dollar MegaMillions jackpot was sold in Florida. However, merely because the lottery drawing has been completed, does not mean that scams related to the drawing have ended. Year after year, lottery scams are one of the most common and profitable scams for scam artists, the only criminals we refer to as artists. What is now happening is that people are being contacted by emails, text messages and informed by the scammers that although they did not win the top prize, they did win one of the lesser prizes which can be as much as a million dollars. The only catch is that you need to prepay administrative fees or income taxes on your winnings before your prize will be sent to you.
Because hundreds of millions of tickets were sold for this latest Megamillions drawing it is a good chance that when you are contacted by a scammer posing as a Megamillions lottery agent, that you may have purchased a ticket or two, however, it is important to remember that the lottery commissions that operate Megamillions do not have any information as to who purchased particular tickets so if you get a text message or an email from someone saying that your ticket is a winner, it is a scam. In addition, administrative fees are never assessed as a condition of receiving a legitimate lottery prize. As for income taxes, legitimate lotteries never collect taxes from you as a condition of claiming your prize. Either, as Megamillions does, the taxes are deducted from your prize before you receive the prize or, as some lotteries operate, the entire prize is sent to you and you are responsible for paying the taxes yourself to the IRS.
Even if you get an email that contains the logo of Megamillions or some other legitimate lottery, it is important to remember that it is easy to counterfeit the logo to make the email look legitimate.
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