If a letter arrives in your mail box or at your door stating that “You’ve won the lottery!”, throw it in the trash immediately. Likewise, if someone phones you, announcing that “You’ve won the lottery!”, hang up. The only chance you will ever have of winning a lottery – which is one chance in many, many millions – is if you purchase a ticket yourself and draw the winning numbers. In which case, you’ll need to contact the Lottery officials. They won’t initiate contact with you.
These scam letters and callers can be very convincing. They will steal official-looking logos and place them on letterhead. Their language will be forceful and convincing. They will want you to mail or wire them money, using a service such as Western Union. Don’t fall for them. No legitimate lottery will ever request money from you upfront in order to collect winnings.
Never trust any communication you receive that involves a lottery. There is always a crook behind that type of correspondence. And, they want to steal your money, not give you money.