Fake sweepstakes, bogus lotteries and other scams were responsible for stealing $227 million from U.S. residents in 2020.
That’s the word from the Better Business Bureau, which reports the amount of lost money is 33 percent greater than it was in 2019.
In one case, a scammer pretending to represent Publisher’s Clearing House told an elderly Michigan man he’d won $2.5 million — and he could have it once he payed $72,000 in taxes and fees. The victim complied and never heard from the thief again, according to the BBB.
“If you … get an email, a call, any contact, a letter that says you’ve won a prize, but you have to send money, rip up the letter, hang up the phone and report it to law enforcement,” says Publisher’s Clearing House rep Chris Irving. “Because that’s a scam.”
Have you ever been victimized by a scammer? Have you ever outsmarted one?