If our readers can recall, we had put together a list of some common Facebook online scams that people fall prey to. Adding to this list is another scam that is doing the rounds on the Internet. We call it the ‘Facebook Online Lottery Scam.’ Here’s a brief about what this scam is all about.
A couple of days ago, I received an unsolicited email informing me about an online lottery that I just won. The email stated that, I was one of the eight lucky winners to have won a sum of $1,000,000 in cash. According to the sender, nine hundred thousand email addresses on Facebook were chosen for the lucky draw.
So, how do I claim this unbelievable-out-of-nowhere prize? It was easy. I simply had to reply to this sender (firstname.lastname@example.org) with the following personal details:
I was also advised to keep this information confidential, otherwise, I would have risked getting unqualified for the prize.
The Real Story
While it always feels awesomely great to win a lottery or a prize, the above email is purely an online scam. It is just one of the sadistic tricks of cybercriminals to lure users with the ‘money carrot’ and trick them into furnishing their personal information including name, address, phone number, etc.
If I had replied to this email with the information they had asked for, then this is what would have happened.
The scammer would have replied asking me for a certain fee required for transferring the money into my account and probably my bank account details too. And If I had gone a step further, then I would have ended up losing my money to something that did not even exist in the first place; I would have been scammed!
We advise our readers never to respond to such unexpected or unsolicited emails, especially those associated with money. Be extra cautious against such emails that contain attachments or links. Clicking these would either take you to a phishing website or drop a nasty malware on your system.
Leave your comments if you ever came across any such emails in the past. Stay safe!