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One of the Texas Lottery Commission's "Core Values" is to ensure the security and integrity of the Games of Texas. The Security Spotlight highlights useful information for players and retailers that will enhance the fun and entertainment of playing the Games of Texas.
WHAT STEPS CAN I TAKE AS A TEXAS LOTTERY PLAYER TO SAFEGUARD MY TICKETS AND HAVE THE BEST PLAYING EXPERIENCE POSSIBLE?
- Purchase tickets only from a licensed Texas Lottery retailer.
- Always check your tickets at the time of purchase to ensure that you received the correct lottery game, numbers and drawing date.
- Sign your tickets upon receipt. If you lose a signed ticket, and it is submitted to the Texas Lottery, your signature may prevent someone else from claiming the lottery prize.
- If you lose a lottery ticket or it is stolen, you can report the loss to the Texas Lottery Commission, either to the Texas Lottery Retailer Services Hotline (1-800-375-6886) or to any Lottery Claim Office. If your ticket was stolen, you must report the theft to the local law enforcement agency, obtain a case number, and provide the case number to the Texas Lottery Commission.
- Check your own tickets and determine your prizes before presenting them to the retailer for validation. Players can check their own draw game and scratch-off game tickets at the Texas Lottery's 17,000+ retail locations by using a self-service Check-a-Ticket machine or a Gemini™ vending machine. Winning results for draw game tickets can be printed by any licensed Texas Lottery retailer and are also available on the Texas Lottery website (www.txlottery.org).
- Verify the validation amount for your winning tickets by watching the validation display section of the customer-facing lottery sales monitor.
- Ask the retailer for the validation receipt when you validate your tickets to ensure the accuracy of the transaction with the retailer.
- Report any suspicious activity or concerns that you have regarding a lottery ticket purchase to the Texas Lottery immediately. The Texas Lottery has a formal complaint process to address complaints from players and retailers. Phone complaints can be made to the Compliance Hotline at 512-344-5300 or 1-800-375-6886 x5300. Written complaints can be made online or via the mail or faxed to (512)344-5080.
WHAT STEPS CAN I TAKE AS A TEXAS LOTTERY RETAILER TO SAFEGUARD MY TICKETS AND HAVE THE BEST SELLING EXPERIENCE POSSIBLE?
- Maintain accurate inventory records including the game #, Pack # and ticket #.
- Do not pay prizes on tickets that have not been validated properly through the terminal.
- Provide all customers with their validation receipt for ticket validations that you perform.
- Properly deface tickets for which a prize has been paid. Do not return tickets to players after you have paid a prize.
- Report stolen tickets immediately to local law enforcement authorities and the G-TECH hotline at 1-800-458-0884. G-Tech hotline is open daily from 4 a.m. to 12 a.m. midnight. Do not pay a prize amount that is less than the prize amount indicated.
Be Aware of Lottery Scams:
Criminals and con artists work constantly to develop new ways to cheat people. They steal your identity, Social Security number and financial data. Be cautious when dealing with strangers or unsolicited emails because it may be a scam intended to get your personal information.
- The Texas Lottery does not ask for an advance payment or "good faith" money to claim a prize.
- The Texas Lottery does not make unsolicited communications indicating that you have won a lottery when you have not submitted a claim or entry for a drawing. Only those players, who have submitted a lottery claim or an entry for a "second chance" drawing to the Texas Lottery, are eligible to win a prize.
Examples of common scams are listed below:
- The Latin Lotto Scam gets its name because these con artists most commonly target Spanish-speaking residents who are often elderly; although these con artists may target anyone. Claiming to have a winning ticket, they request the "victim" help them claim the prize because they are in the country illegally and the Lottery requires a Social Security number and prepayment of taxes. The scam commonly involves a second person - posing as a stranger to the first person – that walks by and "confirms" that the ticket is "valid." The scammers ask the victim to put up "good faith" money to pay the taxes and they will then share the prize with the victim. Of course, the scammers get away with the victim's good faith money and there is no prize to share. To learn more about the common Latin Lotto Scam, download the flyers in English and Spanish.
The Truth Report (PDF file)
¡Sepa La Verdad! (PDF file)
- A stranger offers to sell you a "winning" ticket, maybe for less than the retail price of the ticket. The ticket is probably worthless because it is stolen; the prize has already been paid; or it has been altered to appear to be a winning ticket.
- You receive an e-mail claiming to be from the "Texas Lottery Commission" or other lottery indicating that you have won a prize. This e-mail may state that in order to receive your prize, you must reply to the e-mail providing your personal information like name, social security number, and bank account number. The e-mail may also state that you need to pay a "processing fee". This scam sometimes involves using real Texas Lottery Commission employee names and fake e-mail addresses made to look legitimate. The Texas Lottery Commission may correspond with players via e-mail as a response to their submitted claim or "second chance" drawing entry, but will never ask for personal information to be sent via an e-mail. The Texas Lottery does not make unsolicited communications indicating that you have won a prize when you have not submitted a claim or entry for a "second chance" drawing.
- You receive a letter with a foreign postmark and official looking documents claiming you are one of the winners of a foreign lottery. The letter states you must send bank account information and/or pay a processing fee to claim your prize. For additional information on international lottery scams and tips to avoid them, visit the Federal Trade Commission's Web page on cross-border fraud, at www.ftc.gov.oia/consumer.shtm.
In these examples, you (the "winner") never receive a penny and the criminals make off with your money and possibly your identity.
Texas Lottery Resources:
Any suspicious activity involving Texas Lottery games or questions regarding the legitimacy of communications you received about lottery prizes or claims can be reported to the Texas Lottery Commission at 1-800-37-LOTTO or by e-mail at email@example.com.
Suspicious lottery e-mails can be reported to the Federal Trade Commission's Bureau of Consumer Protection at www.ftc.gov or call 1-877-FTC-HELP. You can also report unsolicited commercial e-mails to the FTC at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Suspicious lottery mail appearing to be lottery material from a foreign country can be reported to your local postmaster or by contacting your local US Postal Inspection Office.
Additional information on lotteries and sweepstakes is available from the Attorney General of Texas at http://www.oag.state.tx.us/consumer/lotteries.shtml.
Consumer complaints can also be filed with the Texas Attorney General's Consumer Protection Hotline at 1-800-621-0508. Written complaints can be made online at https://www.oag.state.tx.us/forms/cpd/form.php.
If you think you are the victim of an Internet related crime, contact the Internet Crime Complaint Center at http://www.ic3.gov/complaint/default.aspx.