Breaking News
More () »

BBB of Washington: 'High pressure' sales tactics used in reported prize scam

An alleged sweepstakes prize turned into a scammer trying to sell a consumer a $10,000 fire protection system, according to a Washington Better Business Bureau.

SEATTLE — A recently reported scam to the Better Business Bureau's Scam Tracker has the agency putting Washington consumers on alert.

According to the BBB, a consumer reported an alleged lottery to win ski lift tickets turned into a "high pressure" sales tactics attempt to sell a home fire protection system.

The company reportedly talked the consumer into letting them come out to their home and according to the report, the visit lasted for two hours. The fire protection system was priced at $10,000.

The BBB of Washington said it is rare to have in-home scam attempts like this one, but that many start with phone calls. 

Other attempts will use text messages or emails to lure a consumer into entering bank account information or buying gift cards as an "upfront payment" to release prize winnings or enter you into a drawing.

You can report scam activity to BBB Scam Tracker.

 10 Tips to Avoid Scams:

  • 1. Never send money via gift card or wire transfer to someone you have never met face-to-face.
  • Avoid clicking on links or opening attachments in unsolicited emails. 
  • Don’t believe everything you see. 
  • Double check your online purchase is secure before checking out. 
  • Use extreme caution when dealing with anyone you’ve met online.
  • Never share personally identifiable information with someone who has contacted you unsolicited, whether it’s over the phone, by email, on social media, or even at your front door.
  • Resist the pressure to act immediately. 
  • Use secure and traceable transactions. 
  • Whenever possible, work with local businesses.
  • Be cautious about what you share on social media.  

Before You Leave, Check This Out