Canadian Sweepstakes scam is the name given to a type of scam that is widely acknowledged as the most successful of scams ever. It is estimated that victims who have fallen to Canadian sweepstakes fraud have been cheated of more than US$5 billion. Fraudsters of this genre like to have their base in Canada.
Canada is regarded a safe haven for operating this scam. Most of the scams are run out of Canadian soil. This is why the scam was given the name Canadian Sweepstakes scam. The country is known to hold out light punishments for telemarketing fraud related crimes. This encourages swindlers and fraudsters to act out scams from its territory.
Although operating out of one country, you will find that the victims of the scam are spread all over the world. People who fill out lottery forms in the hope of participating in them are particularly at risk. Their names, phone numbers, addresses and email addresses are sold to fraudsters who perpetrate this scam.
Anatomy of the Scam
The elderly are made prime targets of the scam. They are often lonely and are always on the lookout for someone to talk to. Someone with whom they can share their problems. But there is a significant other reason why fraudsters warm up to them. They have a substantial amount of money in the form of their lifetime savings.
Victims of the Canadian sweepstakes scam are contacted by email, phone or by ordinary mail. They are given the news that they had just won a lottery. To claim the prize, they are first asked to send some money. This money can be said to be required for a variety of reasons. Sometimes it is to cover the taxes that all winners have to pay, sometimes as administrative fees in operating the lottery. The victims are asked to send the money to Canada.
Those who submit the money first time around are contacted to give some more. They would be told that their winnings have been upgraded. They are offered the first prize now as the original winner was disqualified from the contest.
Or it is claimed that prize was being held up by the government who are demanding some more fees. The caller acts as the middleman and would ask for more money as part of his fees.
Avoid these fraudsters at all cost!
People who are contacted by these fraudsters should avoid them like the plague. They take to this line because they are masters in the art of smooth talking. They are so good that they can gain trust of anyone effortlessly.
These criminals are known to cheat compulsively. They claim to get a thrill out of swindling somebody. They act so convincingly that within a few minutes of talking, anybody can get hooked.
Moreover the police are not able to do anything in these types of scams. Since the criminals use internet and cell phones, they are able to cover their tracks easily. As a result, police find it very hard to trace them.
It would be impossible, therefore, to recover lost money. People should be wary of these scams. They should not as much as reply back to them. Because once they respond, they can only sit and watch as their hard-earned money goes down the drain.