14 February 2008
Caerphilly Trading Standards officers are warning residents about lottery scammers who make you think you've won the lottery - and then steal your money and worse, your identity.
Residents of Caerphilly County Borough have received unsolicited letters telling them they have won a prize in the Spanish lottery and either need to pay an administration fee to release the cash or are asked for their bank details.
In the process they are asked for their signature - and this together with their bank details gives the scammers enough information to possibly steal the victim's identity.
Trading Standards officers are warning that in such scams victims are often asked to pay a charge to release their winnings, which they will never receive.
Caerphilly Trading Standards Manager Jacqui Morgan, said: "We strongly advise against providing any information to the fraudsters who run these scams. Do not respond at all to any postal demands or emails of this kind, and if you already have replied, cease all communication immediately. Forward all fraudulent lottery correspondence to your local Trading Standards team or to the Office of Fair Trading."
Caerphilly County Borough Councils cabinet member for the environment, Cllr David Poole said, "Always remember that if you give out your personal details, fraudsters have enough information to commit identity theft and can then access your bank and credit card accounts or carry out illegal acts in your name."
For further information, contact Consumer Direct Wales on 08454 04 05 06 or Caerphilly Trading Standards Service on 01495 235291.
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