Search

Mare Street firm Prizeology launches campaign warning against fake lotteries and prize draw scams

PUBLISHED: 12:25 16 October 2017 | UPDATED: 12:25 16 October 2017

Sarah Burns (centre) with her colleagues. Picture: Prizeology

Sarah Burns (centre) with her colleagues. Picture: Prizeology

Prizeology

A Mare Street business founder who made her name running prize draws for other firms has launched a campaign to stop people falling victim to scams.

Sarah Burns, who runs Prizeology, was spurred to take action after spotting self-evident cons being shared by people on her Facebook page.

“It annoyed me people could be so naive to think companies like Disney were giving away trips or Apple were giving away 1,000 iPads,” said Sarah. “They didn’t spell things correctly, they only had 60 followers and it clearly wasn’t Apple.

“I realised that people were spending thousands of pounds trying to claim prizes that didn’t exist, and I thought: ‘This is something we as an agency can really get behind – we are industry experts and can help educate consumers.’”

Among the most common scams are fake lotteries and prize draws, where criminals might trick people with official-looking documents or websites into paying a fake admin fee, paying bogus postal or insurance costs or making premium rate phone calls.

Sarah, who has worked in the industry for 20 years, has come up with some top tips to help people differentiate legitimate prize promotions and the scams.

While the closing dates for real prize promotions are exact, scams will put you under pressure to reply.

No genuine prize draw or competition will ever ask for a processing fee to release your “prize”, and you can’t “win” a lottery or prize draw if you did not enter it in the first place.

Sarah said: “People can kill themselves as a result of giving away their life savings because of the shame of it, and the scale of it is enormous.

“The information age we are in means these things are getting worse. There are multiple ways you can contact people and scam them, but if it sounds too good to be true it probably is – it’s a cliché for a reason.”

Sarah is planning a big campaign next year backed by National Trading Standards’ scams team, and hopes to get a big brand sponsor to help cover the cost.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Hackney Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Hackney Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Hackney Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Hackney Stories

16:00

Clapton will look to bounce back after their eight-game winning streak was brought to an end by league leaders Redbridge in a 2-1 defeat at Oakside.

Academy boss would love to see more fans and first-team players at Brisbane Road next week to support youngsters against Sholing

12:00

Leyton Orient will have a new face, or should that be faces, in the dugout this weekend when they host Dover Athletic in the National League on Saturday.

11:15

England admit they were below required standards despite remaining in cruise control against a Cricket Australia XI on day three of their final Ashes warm-up match.

10:30

England striker Jodie Taylor scored twice ahead of the upcoming international break, as Arsenal made their extra quality count by thrashing Watford in the FA WSL Continental Tyres Cup on Thursday night.

Leatherhead player-manager discusses why the Whites are doing so well this season and how he’ll get behind O’s Ross Embleton this weekend

09:59

I drove east around the M25 to Enfield after Arsene Wenger’s press conference at London Colney on Thursday to make the short trip to Hotspur Way to hear Mauricio Pochettino talk about the North London derby.

14:11

Many of Hackney’s 3,000 families stuck in temporary accommodation have no real prospect of getting an affordable home in the borough, according to a council chief.

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now


Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read news

Show Job Lists