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Scammers are exploiting the FTC’s good name by promising phony sweepstakes prizes. The FTC investigates fraud and provides free consumer information. It never collects money directly from consumers. FTC staff is not involved with nor do they conduct sweepstakes or lottery contests. Scammers will impersonate actual FTC employees, but the FTC never gives awards or sweepstakes. The FTC does want you to know how to avoid being deceived by government imposters. Learn how...

What to do if you receive a scam call

Report the incident by filing a complaint at Be sure to include:

  • Date and time of the call
  • Name of the government agency the imposter used
  • Prize amount, amount requested in fees, and payment method
  • Phone number of the caller. Although scammers may use technology to create a fake number or spoof a real one, law enforcers may be able to track that number to identify the caller.
  • Any other details from the call

The FTC cannot resolve individual consumer complaints, but we have tips to help you get your money back.

Common scams, names, and phone numbers reported to the FTC OIG

Consumers should beware of fraudulent calls from imposters who identify themselves as government agents such as FTC employees or contractors. Even if real FTC employees’ names and phone numbers are used, these calls are scams.
Common Scams:

  • The consumer has won a sweepstakes or lottery but has to send money to take delivery.
  • The consumer’s assets are frozen until a fake debt, fine or lien is paid.
  • The caller is going to help the consumer recover funds lost in a scam.
  • The caller claims to be collecting back taxes or immigration fees.