Did you get a call from area code (876)?

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Image of phoneRing, ring… you get a call from a number starting with area code (876). They call to say you’ve won the “Mega Millions” Jamaican lottery, and you could even win a car! All you have to do is pay a few thousand bucks in taxes or fees, and the big jackpot is yours.

That’s great news, right? Wrong.

Don’t send money to anyone who claims to have a prize for you. Odds are good that it’s a scam. And just so you know, playing a foreign lottery is against federal law.

A new twist: scammers are asking people to pay “taxes and fees” with prepaid cards. They tell you to go to the nearest pharmacy or a big retail store, buy a card, and call them back to read them the number. Whether you use a prepaid card or a wire transfer — once you send your money, you can’t get it back. So keep card and account numbers to yourself. Scammers use this information to hustle even more money out of you — and your accounts.

We get complaints from people who have lost A LOT of money to foreign lottery scams. Some folks have told us that they’ve been threatened with physical harm if they don’t pay the fees.

If you get a call about a foreign lottery, we recommend that you hang up. And before you do, you might want to tell the caller:

  • I never entered a foreign lottery, so I couldn’t have won
  • I never send money to someone who calls me
  • My phone number is on the Do Not Call Registry, so you shouldn’t be calling me — and I’m reporting your number  

Have you gotten a call like this? We want to hear about it. Submit a complaint at ftc.gov/complaint, or call 1-877-FTC-HELP. And learn more about recognizing and reporting lottery scams and prize scams.

Blog Topics: 
Money & Credit

Comments

Brian....no one is singling out Jamaica. But we do have a problem with the 876 calls. The scams are coming from 876...Kingston JM. I get calls everyday. When I spoke to them in creole, I thought that it would stop. Not.

I am Jamaican and its the number one in scamming the US elderly and its a shame. Scammers are evil and should do life in prison. The US will deal with them. You are probably a scammer too damn shame. Preying on the elderly taking their hard earned money. You all are scum of the earth.

I receive these calls daily sometimes 2 to 3 times They have been doing this for 3 yrs. I have complained to the phone company and they said they cannot do something. I know better to send money to anyone like that. Its just so annoying and I really feel sorry for some old folks as myself that really send money. Then they changed their stratics they say publishing clearing house which I do not do. Hope this notice save som people from giving away their money. Mine usually says Haiti. go figure

I got a call yesterday, 7/30 from "Bill Johnson" of Mega Millions. Wow. I won $200,000 & a Mercedes Benz which FedEx was going to deliver to my door. I knew it was a scam, but was curious. Bill told me to go to Walgreens, buy a coupon for $190, scratch back and get 14 digits. The, call him back at 740-531-3340 and tell the numbers. He called back again and asked if I had bought my coupon. I gave him a bunch of numbers I made up. Back he calls. The numbers aren't working. Anyway,through out the day he would call and tell me he was in Sioux Falls, S. Dakota. It was crazy. He babbled away and I kept telling him I was confused. Told him I would have to talk to the clerk at the bank. The clerk, calling himself John Burger called me from 1-876-378-5764 to tell me what a great association Mega Millions was. Oh, I say. What am I supposed to do? Bill and John tell me that I should go to the bank and send money electronically. I tell them that the bank needs a name and account no. They tell me "Mr." Edith Brodie, routing #091408734, Account #11634961. I was going to get money forwarded to my account (which I never gave them). I was to receive money sent from Great Western Bank. Great. That bank folded in 1997. Game over. Figured I had enough info. Called the FBI who forwarded me to the FTC to report. I never sent any money or did anything they wanted and NEVER gave them any of my personal, bank or financial information. It's sad that there are people who get taken in by these scams.

Hi Ladygus I just read your post on Do Not Call and I just had to tell you what a great job I think you did. So often it is much the other way around and your reading where someone got ripped off so once more great job off handling these thieves

I got a call today from Megamillions Same Deal as above: Claiming my number had been drawn, and I am this months 2.5 million dollar winner, and I will be getting a brand new Pearl White Mercedes benz lol... from a 775-526-0465 number. Total Scam alert, and they asked for me to go to a 711 Wallgreens CVS like above. I played along for a bit, and could barely understand as he barely spoke english, and asked for my Drivers License, and Bank Information all of which I told him I am not telling him any information because this is a scam. I hung up, and expect them to call back again, but will let them know ive reported them to the FTC.

Did the FTC do anything with the info you gave them

My mother n.law got a call from mega millions from Jamaica. They said she won a fancy i phone a 300 car and $500,050,000. The guys name was mr.Williams keep calling her saying he will call her back with the paper work. I told her it sounded to good to be true so i look it up on line and found this. We reported him and she called him back saying hes a lier and a.fraud he got REALLY upset. Started arguing with her.

Big problems

Got a call today from 876-279-0401...told me I should have gotten an email notification that I had won $5.5 million. Yeah right...because working in a business that involves preventing scammers and fraudsters, I knew right away it was a scam. I could barely understand this man and didn't even get the chance to ask me to go get a prepaid card. I asked him who he was trying to contact and he said "ma'am your information is in our system and due to confidentiality purposes I'm unable to provide you with that information." Yeah OK...you're the one calling me, and you can't tell me who you're calling. OK, thanks but no thanks, and goodbye.

I also have filed claim with FTC about these annoying phone calls but what worries me more is the fact that this is a National Security Issue and the FTC has to have a contest to get help in getting rid of the Robocallers.......this is very disturbing.

To the gentleman who was offended that it was Jamaicans that I was referring to - unfortunately that is where they were from. Each and every one of the unscrupulous gentlemen, and I use that description loosely. I have many good friends who are from that wonderful island and they agree with me. I have now reported it to the Justice Department who will be dealing with this. Enough is enough. I finally saw the light. Thank God I finally woke up after $52,000 + over three years. They are very persuasive, so if you think you won't do it, be forewarned they can talk you into it. Watch youselves. They cry very convincingly.

Sorry LoppyLugnut, but people with an IQ over 60 don't fall for these kinds of scams. There's a reason you lost money to a scam like this, and only half of it is greed.

Just got scammed out of 259.00 under pretense of a government grant. They had all my information which is scary and said for a fee they would wire me the grant money. Relief act of 2009 they said. Similar to everyone's experience they had me go to rite aid and buy a prepaid scratch off card and give them the number. Then they had me call " the bank" for my wire transfer information and I was asked for another 420.00! They said they were from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Don't fall for this. I have since learned they are NOT a bank who holds money for government grants!! I tried to call back for a refund of my fee and was told they could not give me one. The phone numbers involved were 206-855-3305 and 347-566-1964 hope this info helps someone avoid what happened to me!

I got a phone call from (315)675-7745, his name is Rick Olson and he's from the Federal Grant Money company. He doesn't have all my information but he has some, including my bank account but I'm going to switch banks. He told me to send him $200 so i can secure my "grant" money. Then he told me that i needed to fill out a registration form and pay him another $500 but my dad said this straight out sounds like a fraud because who tells people to send money at a weird and unknown bank.

does any one ever get a call from 850-688-9899
they are very annoying calling four or five times a day I have caller id not answering. just wondering

received a text on cell from 9413122983 from mastercard78 to contact them. knowing this is a scam did not. has anybody else received same.

Do a search for the number (include the - ) You will usually find a site like 1-800 notes with a lot of post and some with more info.

Then, do this if you can - I do on my cell phone, not sure if you can on home phone -- anyway, save the number in your contacts - I put a Z in front of the name so it does not slow my down looking for my regular contacts. Important, do this -- set the contact to "no ring"! You are never bothered again by this number. Onmy system i can save 5 different numbers under the same name. I have upwards to 100 names saved - ZScam me not ZCrapola, Z more crap etc! Now my phone only rings from people I want to talk to. Every few days a new unknown number pops up. I never answer, I bing search the number, just to be sure it is not a company I want to talk to and to be able to give a proper name. After retiring with only social security as income, I contacted my three credit cards, explaining my situation, asking them to help by lowering the 30% interest rate they were charging, one did and I still have that card in good standing the other two basically told me to buzz off, no help. Those two I never paid another penny to or talked to on the phone. Three of my names are ZChase me, ZChase me2 and ZChase me3. With 5 numbers each. Those guys have a lot of phones!!

Hey, I'm a handicapped, 1 handed hunt and pecker and thos forum does not havespell check, so save the complaints if you see a misspelling or typing error, thanks - hope this helps. I have peace and have never used the DNC reg. either.

Scam call from 876-321-8011 Aug 9, 2014
Received a call from David Peterson from Jamaica New York, saying I won the Publishers Clearinghouse Sweepstakes and to call this number. I did so and he wanted me to buy a GreenDot card from Dollar General or CVS to pay 1% tax due on my winnings of $2.5 million. He did not know my name.

I got this call today. $2.5 million & a red 2014 Mercedes Benz. Can they come to my house today? I said no. Do I shop at Walmart (on repeating it became KMart) or CVS or Walgreens? I said yes. Do I pay my utility bills on time? I said yes. He then gave me the name of a scratch card to go pick up at one of them. He mentioned Michelle Obama, not sure why. I was waiting for the scam to fall, as it were. He finally said something about taking care of all but 1% of my 30% taxes due on the winnings. So, I was to go pay that 1% then UPS (which on repeating became FedEx)would be able to deliver my prize & car. He guaranteed me I'd see him at my house today. He also asked me what state I lived in. Hmmmm, you're going to be at my house today, but you don't know where I live? I just kept making him repeat himself and the small details changed. Oh, his "name " was John Black, and the call came from 876-435-5719.

Got the same call on 10/07/14

Got the same call except it was a black Mercedes-Benz. 12/19/14.

I just now received the same call, my "winnings", $850.000 and a 2015 Chevy Malibu. I played along with "Mike Davis" for 45 minutes waiting for him to trip up, which he did. He started to harass me and copped an attitude for not believing him. So of course I hung up. He actually called me back, I curiously answered, and he tells me that I need a husband because I was getting too upset! I said seriously dude? You are insulting MY intelligence? Then I used some expletives and hung up. He has not called back. I do believe I will report this. Don't fall for this pathetic scam!

Just Got the Same Call from David Peterson from jamaica New York

My good friend a older gentleman has received several phone calls and has made arrangements to receive a lot of money through faxes and opening a new bank account. They have all his personal information and now he expects to get tons of money in his bank account. I feel like there is nothing else we as friends of the family can do. My friend will not listen to common sense. I wish that there was something we can do to help. if someone has information to help please post it on here.

Perhaps you could call him and say you are Agent Concerend of the FFBI (Fake FBI) and would like to inform him you have reason to believe he is the victim of this scam (give him this website's address.) Just a thought.

That's a really great idea. My elderly friend also was scammed. The calling number was unlisted but over a series of days wherein "Paul" and "Samuel Williams" were to deliver a car and $25k and a $2.5 million dollar check, he learned their callback number was 876 485-9108. They only scammed him for $300. but he will now have to close his bank account, etc. Sad that they take advantage of the elderly.

Received over 20 calls from 876 area code over this month, August. 2162

I've been recently receiving calls at work for fellow employees from people identifying themselves as "Offices Smith, Johnson, etc", when I tell them that the person is not available, they tell me that there is a warrant out for their arrest and that if I don't pass the message along, it makes me an accomplice. To make a long story short, one of our employees called the number back, and was told that unless he paid X amount of money immediately as a "bond" his arrest was imminent. We all knew it was a scam, but we wanted to test the waters. These individual was VERY aggressive, so I can see how so many people would be conned. The sad thing is, that our legal council, contacted everyone they could think of, including the FBI, and we were told there was nothing they could do. They use VOIP numbers (voice over IP address) to call. "Officer Smith" had a very heavy Hindu accent. Con Artists are from all over the world, male, female, young and old.

They are still at it. I was wise and did not send money. "John Gilmore" with "UPS Company" called me from (876) 594-3143 telling me I won $13.9 million and a 2014 Mercedes. I only need to send $125 handling fee via Western Union to "Merchant Banker Shortie Wells". He spelled all the names to me and said to call him back when I was at Western Union so he could help me fill out the Sender Form with no mistakes. When I did not call him back, he called me again. I played along with no intension of ever sending money or giving him any personal information. He has called me at least 8 times today. I told him I do not believe him and will not pay for something that I won. Let's see if he calls again. DON'T BE FOOLED by these people!

8-27-14 Calls from 844-695-9395 in the last few days. Their message says they are looking for Roger Perkins and that if this isn't his phone # to call them back.
I am not going to call them, they know there is no one by that name at this #.
I have been getting unwanted calls for over 6 months.
I don't answer the phone!

"Publisher's Clearinghouse" called me from 876 area code and it was Mr. Johnson. After a while of playing along, never giving info, I asked what type of fraud it was. I was answered by being told to look out my window as he was going to shoot me in the head. Real nice guy. I called the police, my cell provider, Publisher's Clearinghouse.
The calls stopped for a few months and are back, along with bladder mesh surgery claim calls.

many many many what works it to sy and FYI this line is monitored by the police re these calls

People using 876 numbers and calling into the US on these scams should get a busy signal for any US exchange.

876-576-5432 called me yesterday. Said he worked for the Price is Right game show. Apparently, I won $2.7 million and a new car. Pretty good for a guy who doesn't watch television.

I have rec every day 10 or more call from 876 and I have told them not to call anymore but they just keep calling from diferent ext. To many to block calls

those calls from 876 can't be blocked or traced,as they are coming from trac phones!

I got called today 9/11/14 from #876-590-1656 telling me they were from Mega Millions and I had won 5.5 million:) just one thing though I had to send $175 to a Marcel Moseley in Westmoreland Jamaica. Very convincing until I heard send to Jamaica. Need a better way to get this info to the public, I never new about this scam until I did some research, no wonder they are getting the elderly and uninformed. Take some of those air strikes away from Isis and direct them to Jamaica.

Oh just like that huh? Because there aren't any innocent people living here as well. Let's hope you have no friends & family visiting the island if they do direct air strikes to JA. You Americans behave as if your country is all gold & clean! Please get over yourself!!! Yes scamming is wrong & those involved should be punished but don't behave as if the US is crime free. If you people weren't so stupid to keep sending money then they wouldn't be thriving. Stop bad mouthing an island you know nothing about and move along. Focus on the racism & crime in YOUR country, the scammers will get theirs.

Scammers are everywhere... I have even had people try and scam me here in America! I really don't think anyone is bad mouthing other countries there just saying what country these calls are coming from!

When you say we should send air strikes to Jamaica, I'd say that is "bad mouthing other countries."

true dat

Calling for air strikes on Jamaica! That's hate speech

A mega millions rep who says I won 3.5 mill and a new Mercedes sends you emails with his picture, megamillions logo and a copy of your check with pictures of previous winners. To entice you further, he offers to pay off your credit card which he did for me but wanted me to use the cash advance of $1500 to purchase green dot cards. He gave me $200 of it for my trouble. Then he paid the card off again and wanted me to do it all over again. So I did. He calls from an 876 number. too. Anybody heard of David Turner?

Kind of sounds like money laundering. Or building up to something bigger.

I hate people they didn't get know money from me but all thaws people that scam need shot in the HEAD. Thanks have a nice day

I have been getting flooded with calls from Jamaica as well as five of six states here in the U.S. I put their phone numbers in my telephone contacts list and then block the number. I now have 44 blocked numbers. It has slowed it down, but they seem to have endless phone numbers available. I never answer the calls.

These people call multiple times a day - sometimes after 9p and 10p in the evening. They also don't always use the 876 area code as when we don't answer, they call right back and the call comes up as "private" on the caller ID. It is ridiculous that there seems to be nothing anyone can do to make them stop calling. It is harassment when you instruct them to stop calling, yet they refuse.

876-594-4471....claimed to be Publishers Clearinghouse....said I won 10m and a Mercedes SUV....told him to come grapark it in the drive, then hung up.....

First, 876 is a foreign number. If you call it back, you will be charged an exorbitant amount. Have your phone service take care of it for you.
Second, a family member has been receiving calls from some of these numbers. He entered an online sweepstakes (doesn't use the internet) is due money from SSA (they already have his info) owes money to the IRS (no). They also piggyback phone numbers from legitimate businesses.
I played mind games with a couple of these scammers. Had them working about a week for nothing. The next caller is going to get "You're the guy who said he was due x amount of money from SSA. He's still waiting for it."
Here's some clues scammers: Your voice is recognizable. Don't claim to be from a federal agency one day and another the next. Don't piggyback off a state agency number either. And if you do, make it from a state the person has nexus in. Don't expect me to answer any calls from "private caller" or "unavailable". And don't expect any cooperation from people who've been called several times in the last few weeks. Game is scarce.

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