Missouri Lottery warns residents of recent scams

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. - The Missouri Lottery warned residents on Friday of a recent scam they were made aware of. 

The scheme involved a scammer posing as a lottery official and calling a person saying they had won a large prize. 

In order for the person to claim the prize, they were instructed to open a bank account and deposit funds in there to cover taxes and fees. 

"It's unfortunate, but situations like this happen too often. A general rule of thumb is if a situation seems too good to be true, it probably is," said May Scheve Reardon, executive director of the Missouri Lottery.

Lottery officials said they will never contact players by phone stating they have won a prize, nor will they ask for vital information over the phone and instruct a winner to provide money to claim a prize.

The lottery asks that any individual who believes they were contacted by a fraudulent organization or scammer to call them at (573) 751-4050 or the Attorney General's Fraud Hotline at (800) 392-8222 to report the activity. 

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