Syracuse (WSYR-TV) - Many of us dream of someday winning the lottery, but you have to be careful that your dream doesn't turn into a nightmare. There's a new lottery scam now making the rounds in New York State.
It works a lot like others, where the scammers try to trick you into parting with your money. But this one has a new twist: fake checks that look like they were sent out by New York State, complete with a forged signature of the state comptroller.
Along with the check, you'll get a letter in the mail saying you've just won a lottery or sweepstakes drawing.
You're directed to pay an amount to the scammer in order to secure your full winnings.
Checks have typically been in the amount of either $3,980.05 or $4,885.20.
The checks are supposed to cover the taxes that would be owed on your alleged winnings, but they're fake.
As you know, it takes time for checks to clear. So by the time your depositing bank has learned the check is fake, you've already transferred or wired funds to the scammers. Their gain becomes your loss. You're out the money.
Recent letters have included companies calling themselves “Guaranty Trust, Inc.” with a New York City mailing address, and “Golden Gateway Financial, Division of Unclaimed Funds” with a Las Vegas or London address.
If you get one of those letters, contact the Comptroller's Office. Click here to visit the website.