The US Department of State is warning potential immigrants about an uptick in the fake letters and fraudulent emails sent to people who have applied for the Diversity Immigrant Visa (DV) program, which is sometimes referred to as a "green card lottery."
The Visa Lottery program is conducted each year by the state department with 50,000 prospective immigrants being awarded immigration applications. The winners are eligible to apply for a US visa and visit America.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, often times the scam involves an unscrupulous individual asking for a fee to either enter the visa lottery or increase the chance of winning it. However, the FTC says that there is no entry to enter the lottery and winners are selected at random.
The State Department says that there are a number of ways to recognize fraudulent emails and websites.
"Some websites and emails try to mislead customers and members of the public into thinking they are official U.S. government websites. These websites are designed to appear official, and often have images of the US flag, US Capitol, White House, or Statue of Liberty. What these websites and emails are missing is the ".gov" suffix on their addresses."
Click here to view actual copy of green card lottery scam email.