WAUSAU (WAOW)–The Mega Millions Jackpot now tops a billion dollars and leaves the door open for scammers looking to make a quick buck.
Mega Millions Lottery spokesperson Gary Kohn said phishing scams and fake ticket dealers are not uncommon. As the jackpot grows, scammers are popping up looking to trick players.
Kohn’s number one tip for keeping players safe is making sure you are purchasing tickets from licensed dealers.
“If someone is reaching out to you offering a winning ticket… on any other platform, do not do it,” Kohn said. “It is almost certainly a scam.”
Lottery officials will not reach out to ticket holders about winning. If players receive an email or call saying ‘you won,’ ignore it.
With Jackpot’s record-breaking growth, officials also want to remind people to play responsibly.
They recommend players limit ticket spending and play within their means, not letting the dream of hitting the jackpot break the bank.
“The odds of winning the mega millions is 1 in 302.5 million, that does not change if you buy more tickets,” Kohn said.
If you are concerned about someone having a gambling addiction, call 1-800-GAMBLE-5 or 1-800-426-2535 to be connected with counseling and support.
As of Thursday, the Jackpot is the second highest prize in the game’s 20-year history. The largest prize amounted to 1.5 billion dollars in 2018.