Millionaire raffle organization
Latest: I’ve had multiple independent reports that suggest the scammers are starting to use snail mail (Post Office mail) to target potential victims in a very similar manner to their lottery e-mail scams. The same advice applies – bin any letters you receive, ignore them and do not reply to them.
Firstly, the scammer has to construct a reasonably convincing-sounding “you’ve won the lottery” e-mail, so they’re now tending to throw in verifiable correct facts in there to make it sound legitimate. The three most common things they put in are:
The draw number, date, winning numbers and jackpot amount of a recent UK lottery draw. Note that it won’t always be the latest one – quite often, it’s a few weeks old. Why would they take so long to e-mail you that you’ve won such a huge prize? Answer: they’re scammers and are probably a few weeks behind sending out bulk e-mails to potential victims with info from previous draws to catch up to the most recent one.
The name and/or address of something legitimate that’s lottery related. Favourites include Camelot’s full postal address (both the Olympia Way one in London and the P.O. Box one in Watford have been used) and, quite irritatingly, my name (Richard K. Lloyd), which people Google for and hence I get a constant stream of people asking if the scam e-mail they received is legitimate or not (and if you think about it, why ask me – what credentials do I have to verify such e-mails ?!).
Of course, they then blow this to smithereens by using a free Webmail-based e-mail account (e.g. yahoo.co.uk, hotmail.com and so on) to send their scam e-mail from – do you really think Camelot (who run the UK lottery) would ever send e-mail to end-users from a Yahoo! Mail or Hotmail account? Nope, they never would and this should be enough to stop you dead in your tracks and delete the scam e-mail.
It should be noted here that the only legal place to buy UK lottery tickets (and, yes, you have to buy them – there is no such thing as a “free UK lottery sweepstake” in existence) on the Internet is at the official UK lottery site located at http://www.national-lottery.co.uk/ and even then you need a UK address and a UK debit card. Any other site that says it sells UK lottery tickets is breaking the law. If you have not bought your ticket from either an official UK lottery physical terminal (e.g. in a UK newsagent, UK supermarket etc.) or from the official site mentioned above, then you *cannot* win a UK lottery prize.
Note that even Camelot themselves have now stopped e-mailing people who won via an online ticket (and not a moment too soon – you now have to log into the official Web site to discover you’ve won, which is as it should be). Hence, any person/organisation sending you e-mail saying you’ve won a (usually large) prize on the UK lottery is lying, it’s as simple as that.
The first e-mail you will receive will usually avoid mentioning any “processing/claim/courier fee” that you’ll have pay to them – this is to try to hook you in to the scam and not scare you off right away. Instead, the scammer will ask for as much personal information as possible (full name, address, date of birth etc.) – this is useful for them if you get so deep into the scam that they might want to try forging documents with your info on them. Don’t give them any info (you deleted that e-mail anyway didn’t you ?).
The scammer will often say “don’t tell anyone about this win” (by “anyone”, they probably mean the police, so that they won’t be tracked down and prosecuted !), which is a very silly instruction for them give if you think about it. Who are they to say who you can and can’t tell that you’ve “won” the lottery ?
If you are foolish enough to have started up a phone or e-mail conversation with the scammers, they will inevitably try to get a “claim fee” from you to process the lottery win. Let me see – you’ve “won” a lottery you never entered in the first place and now you’re expected to pay possibly thousands of pounds to someone you’ve never heard of to get hold of “winnings” that they provide no proof whatsoever even exists ?! If you haven’t twigged it’s a scam at this point, you’re quite a naive person to say the least.
Sadly, if you have fallen for the scam and actually sent them money, then you probably have no chance of recovering the money you sent, especially if it’s to a different country (that fact that someone outside the UK would be involved in a UK lottery really should have set alarm bells ringing). If it’s within your own country, perhaps contacting the police might be a start or possibly the standards trading officers for the county involved, but I don’t hold out much hope of ever getting your money back.
Some more reading on this subject to further enlighten you:
The official Camelot site’s Security Advice
Months after I put this page up warning about scams, Camelot finally did something similar. Because of their tardiness (especially poor since scam e-mails often mention the official site and Camelot’s postal address!), I’ve been fielding way too many “I’d like to claim my prize” e-mails, which hopefully will now go to the official site Webmaster and not me (update: nope, still getting a stream of queries about scam e-mails, ho hum).
The UK Government’s list of scam types
Basically says the same thing as this page (don’t communicate with them and delete any messages from them).
BBC News: How not to win a million
Interesting article, including some bloke from the Midlands who was conned out of almost 20,000 Euros.
The Dutch Lottery Scam
This page is handy because it gives you some useful advice on how to report advance fee frauds.
Fraudwatch International’s lottery scams section
A shockingly high number of lottery fraudsters out there!
Please note – although scammers have used my name in their fraudulent e-mails, I am NOT involved in any way with any of these scams. Having read this page, I hope you realise that I don’t need to be e-mailed about these scams – if they use my name and claim you’ve won the lottery, they are fraudulent and should be ignored. I did get one very funny UK lottery scam e-mail though which I think is worth sharing with you , but sadly, it was the exception to the rule.Millionaire raffle organization Latest: I’ve had multiple independent reports that suggest the scammers are starting to use snail mail (Post Office mail) to target potential victims in a very
How Does The EuroMillions
Millionaire Raffle Work?
Millionaires Raffle is an extra game added to every EuroMillions draw in the UK. It was first drawn on Friday 13th November 2009.
There is one prize awarded of £1 Million (as you might expect given the name!). This is guaranteed to be paid out to one EuroMillions ticket holder in the UK each Tuesday and Friday.
Which creates 2 new UK millionaires every week, regardless of who wins EuroMillions itself!
Is It Really UK Only.
Yes – well sort of!
Only tickets bought in UK get allocated a Millionaire Raffle number.
But if you’re outside the UK and want to be included, read below for how you can.
How To Play Millionaire Raffle
You simply buy a EuroMillions ticket. That’s it. There are no numbers to pick or boxes to tick. You automatically get allocated a ‘raffle number’.
You get one unique number for each EuroMillions combination you buy – not just one per ‘ticket’ printed. So if you buy 5 combinations, your ticket should show 5 Raffle numbers too.
One number is then randomly selected (by computer) from all those that have been given out. The holder of that unique number wins the £1 Million prize.
What Do Raffle Numbers Look Like?
Each number is completely unique. That’s what makes this a raffle rather than a lottery.
As you can see from the example ticket here, each number is 9 characters long, and consists of 3 letters and 6 numbers:-
What Are My Chances Of Winning?
Ah, the most important question of all!
This one confuses many players, because as we’ve covered this is not a lottery – it is a raffle. And like any raffle, the odds depend on the number of tickets that have been sold.
Now the number of tickets sold does of course vary. Particularly in weeks when there is a big rollover – when a lot more tickets are sold.
Remember, this game only applies to those tickets bought in the UK though. So you’re NOT competing against all EuroMillions players!
Now, EuroMillions tell me that they normally sell somewhere around 9 million tickets on a Friday, and 3.5 million on a Tuesday.
[Yep, Friday is still way more popular than Tuesday, although the Tuesday draw is growing]
So that means your odds for winning the £1 Million prize on Millionaire Raffle are about 1-in-9 million on a Friday, and 1-in-3.5 million on a Tuesday.
And of course a lot higher when there is a big rollover and ticket sales rocket.
The EuroMillions changes in May 2011 added the Tuesday draw. Which is why there are now 2 new millionaires per week instead of just 1. Here’s more about the EuroMillions Millionaire Raffle Odds as a result of the change.
There are also occasionally special draws with extra prizes given away. In May 2012 for example a special draw paid 18 prizes of £1 Million.
To celebrate hosting the 2012 Olympics, the UK awarded an amazing 100 Millionaire Raffle prizes on 27th July!
And as if that wasn’t enough, they also held a special draw on both Christmas Day 2012, and New Years Day 2013. Both of these draws were also boosted up to 25 x £1 Million winners.
So it is definitely worth watching out for these special draws as your odds of winning a big prize can greatly increase.
Is There Any Catch?
Yes and no. The Raffle is a compulsory draw. You cannot choose if you want to play it or not – it was decided to automatically include it. And that increased the ticket price of EuroMillions in the UK from £1.50 to £2.
So you are paying 50p to play in reality. But most people now seem very happy with the increase given the prize potential, and the odds of winning it.
How Do I Play From Outside The UK?
The secret is – get your tickets from the UK! Which is not difficult to do.
You can’t buy tickets from the main UK Lotto website unless you live in the UK already.
So you can either ask a UK friend to get tickets for you.
Or use an online syndicate that is based in the UK (as all their tickets will automatically include the Raffle game).
Simply join one of the better online EuroMillions Syndicates in our list of reviews, and you’ll be fine (the reviews state if tickets are bought in the UK or not).
Luckily, it just so happens that many of the best online syndicates are either based in the UK or buy their tickets there. Making it easy to play this add-on game from almost anywhere in the world.
The final way would be to use one of the many online ticket buying services.
But this can be an expensive option. A ‘reasonable’ rate from these services is around 2-3 times normal ticket price. But it’s not uncommon to see prices of 5-10 times normal price. So you have to be careful, and know what you are buying.
And of course, you need to double check what country they source tickets from if you want to play Millionaires Raffle!
More EuroMillions Info
Find out more about Euro Millions prizes (about the prize tiers, what you need to match to win, how big the prizes get etc), and more about how to buy EuroMillions tickets online, including some of the better value services you can use.The Raffle is a UK only add-on game paying a guaranteed 1 Million to one ticket holder every draw. Here’s how it works. ]]>