PIERRE, SD - South Dakota Lottery officials are urging players to not be taken in by a scam that promises them winnings from a second chance Mega Millions drawing.
The Lottery has been notified by more than a dozen players, all lotto or scratch ticket winners, who have received phone calls from an individual claiming to be with the South Dakota Lottery who advised them that their prizes made them eligible for a second chance Mega Millions drawing. The caller then went on to tell the player that they had won a $5 million second prize in the drawing and that representatives from the South Dakota Lottery would be delivering that prize in person. Lottery Director Norm Lingle cautions the public not to be fooled if they are contacted.
"The Lottery never enters someone into a drawing, promotion for an added bonus or prize, or for any other reason without that person's knowledge," Lingle said. "If you are contacted by the scammer, either by phone or some other method such as e-mail, we urge you to contact local law enforcement and the Consumer Protection unit of the South Dakota Attorney General’s office at 1-800-300-1986."
Lingle says it's also a good idea to check with his agency to see if such calls or e-mails are legitimate before taking any action requested by the scammer. The Lottery maintains three validation centers across the state in Pierre (605-773-5770), Rapid City (605-394-5106) and Sioux Falls (605-367-5840).
In at least one reported case, the scammer requested the victim purchase a Green Dot Card to receive their winnings. Lingle also advises those contacted to not provide any personal information, including credit card and bank account numbers, if requested by the caller.
Lottery prizes of $101 or more must be claimed at a Lottery office using an official prize claim form. For more information on avoiding lottery scams, visit http://lottery.sd.gov/responsibly/scams/