The very concerning lottery scam targeting Facebook users


Police have warned of a concerning lottery scam that targets Facebook users and already has more than 30 victims.

Queensland Police said the victims were contacted on their account by a person claiming to be a Facebook employee, saying they had won a $7.5 million social media “lottery” prize.

The scam then tells the victims to pay hundreds of thousands of dollars in legal, late or administrative fees to “unlock” the money.

Police said the latest version of the scam involves a Facebook branded “credit card” being sent out after the victims had paid the first instalment of fees.

Police said the latest version of the scam involves a Facebook branded “credit card”. Photo: Queensland Police

The scammers say the credit card can only be unlocked with the winnings when another $7500 is paid.

Queensland Police have sent out pictures of the fake credit cards and said more than 30 people have fallen for the scam.

The latest victim from Mackay lost over $100,000.

“This is just a rehash of a number of long running phishing based lottery scam, just reinvented with a social media angle,” Detective Acting Superintendent Melissa Anderson of the Financial and Cyber Crime Group said.

“There is no Facebook lottery and certainly no Facebook credit card. Victims lose the $7500 and every other instalment or fee they have paid.

“This is just another example of criminals targeting vulnerable members of the community.”

The scammers tell victims the card can only be unlocked with the winnings when $7500 is paid. Photo: Queensland Police

Police have urged Queensland residents to seek independent advice if approached with Facebook offers of “winnings, a once in a lifetime opportunity or a chance to gain hundreds, thousands or million of dollars”.

“You can’t win lotteries unless you buy a ticket. We urge the community to maintain control of their details and be mindful of what information you are giving out online,” Detective Acting Superintendent Anderson said.

“Is this too good to be true? I can say with almost 100% confidence that it will be.”

If you have information for police, contact Policelink on 131 444 or provide information using the online form 24hrs per day.

To get quick tips about how to your Facebook account secure and how to recognise and avoid scams and phishing, please visit https://www.facebook.com/about/basics/stay-safe-and-secure