Beware of International Lottery Scams

International lottery is a term used to describe lotteries that are played outside the country in which they are legal. These companies typically operate in one of two ways, as a lottery agent or a lottery betting website. Both offer the results of a variety of global lotteries in one place, as well as a breakdown of prizes and winning numbers for each game. In addition, some offer a history of past winners and a list of hot and cold numbers that tend to appear frequently in winning combinations.

It is important to be aware of this type of scam in order to protect yourself from being a victim. These scams can take a number of different forms. In one common scenario, a consumer is notified via email or phone that they have won a large sum of money in a foreign lottery or sweepstakes. This notification often comes with requests for money to pay taxes or fees in order to receive the prize. This can continue for weeks, months, or even years, and the person may end up losing thousands of dollars.

If a person does not realize that they have been the victim of a lottery scam and provides their banking information to the “issuing authority,” they may find themselves the subject of identity theft or other financial fraud. This can include bogus checks that can be modeled and used to clean out the victim’s bank account or fraudulent purchases made on credit cards. The Federal Trade Commission reports that consumers lose more than $120 million each year to sweepstakes and lottery scams.