I won the lottery!

Holy crap! I’ve only been in the UK for a day or so, and I already won their national lottery! They just alerted me by email:

Dear winner
We are pleased to inform you of the final announcement of the UK
National Lottery Online thunderball Programme with draw numbers(#625)
01, 18,22,23,,31 05. held on 6th Wed February, 2007.

which subsequently won you the lottery of the Jackpot Prize.You have
therefore been approved to claim a total sum of £1,00,000 (One million pounds sterling). in cash credited to file
KTU/9023118308/03.All participants for the online version were selected
randomly from World Wide Web sites through computer draw system
.Europeanbooklet representative office in Europe as indicated in your
play coupon. In view of this, your £1,00,000 would be released to you
by any of our payment offices in Europe.

Our European agent will immediately commence the process to
facilitate the release of your funds as soon as you contact him.
To file for your claim, please contact our fudiciary agent:

Contact Person: Mr. Michael Field
Tel: +44-701-113-0283

My jet lag must be a little worse than I thought, because I don’t even remember playing! Maybe they read the blog and entered me when I crossed over into British airspace? I feel bad for all the poor folks that have lived here their whole life, patiently waiting for their jackpot. But that’s not gonna keep me from contacting their “fudiciary agent.” Let’s see, they need my bank account number to deposit the winnings. Well, that clearly makes sense. And I have to fill out a form with a lot of info, I guess so that they can prove the payout is going to the right person. I’d better go and fill out this form before they change their mind. Ha, Madonna moved here *years* ago and she never won the National Lottery. Take that, Madonna! 🙂

169 Responses to I won the lottery! (Leave a comment)

  1. Wow. Is this true? 😀 Still may I ask, why does the contact person’s email is at yahoo.co.uk. Someone who gives out £1,00,000… surely… ummm… wow. You’re a millionaire!

    I’m a millionaire too. I play Monopoly. :R

  2. One word – L0L

  3. I’m just surprised that the number 1 million has five zeroes. I always thought it had six.

    Now all the math books will have to be completely rewritten.

  4. Congratulations!

    I had a similar windfall the other day as well. The King of a small African country I’ve never even heard of died and guess who the next of kin is… That’s right! – It’s ME!

    All I need to do if give them my back account information and they will transfer the finds. Woo Hoo!

  5. Freaking hilarious.

    OT, but can you ask the google webmaster control panel team to let users grant access to the webmaster tools to another google account like is possible with google analytics?

    It’s annoying having to logout and login to check my clients webmaster tools.

    Yes, I do SEO for a living.

  6. Congrats! If you ever need help transfering that wealth offshore into a US bank account on behalf of somebody else, let me know. I’m currently doing that for prince abu nahif so by the time he walks me through the process I can help you out too!

  7. Looks like you and I are splitting it Matt!

  8. LOL! You and 60 million others 🙂

    Me thinks the unethical SEO crowd not only sell snake oil, they also sell fake lottery tickets. They know no bounds.

  9. It always amazes me just how bad these messages always are.

    They went to the bother of giving a real result for a real draw but littered the message with crucial typos, got the jackpot wrong, and picked a week that anyone verifying the numbers would quickly find had no jackpot winners — http://www.national-lottery.co.uk/player/p/results/prizes/prizeAction.do?drawType=3&drawNum=625&drawSeq=1

    No Brit would ever format a phone number like that, either.

  10. Wow! They didn’t even bother with a slightly realistic email address.
    So, 5 zeroes in a million (must be the exchange rate), the word ‘fuciciary’ (could they mean ‘fiduciary’ or even ‘fidiciary’? Hey even ‘judiciary’ has the grace to be a proper word.

    It amazes me that these people can’t just go that extra little step to make things look at least slightly convincing. The niceties of spelling and grammar go a long way in creating an illusion or legitmacy.

    That’s low grade phishing of the highest (lowest?) order.

    Can I borrow a tenner?

  11. You couldn’t have won the lottery, since I’ve already won it, emailed them my banking information and now i’m just waiting on the deposit from them…

  12. Feels good to be a winner eh?

    Do UK folks ask you more questions about spam Matt?

    AND please, can you also get me the definition of a “bullock”, is it like a castrated bull or sumthin’?



  13. I have received at least 3 of these email this month – today is the 12th.
    All from UK as well, but funny enough, i never been there. 🙂

  14. I just received this one too. It was due to signing up for Performancing. I have a separate email for all my subscriptions.

  15. I won today also. Does that mean we have split it like real loteries!

  16. Can you get payment in links instead of cash?

  17. Okay, I knew it, Google’s stealing my email.

    I’ll have you know, those emails were for ME and I’M the real winner of that lottery! I just haven’t been able to claim my winnings yet because I’ve had to get my winnings from the British National Lottery, the personal attorney to Mr.Alexander Litvinenko, the Microsoft and AOL are running an e-mail beta test prize draw, the Euromillion Loteria Español, Sir Richard Morrison’s widow, MSW MEGA JACKPOT LOTTO WINNINGS PROGRAMS, the YAHOO! International Promotions Program, and it takes a while to get through these things, what with all the checks I’ve had to send overseas.

    Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got a lounge clothing distribution office that a Thailand company wants me to open, and I have to send them my bank account information to get started.

  18. Problem is Matt, a million pounds will only buy you a beer and a cheese sandwich if you’re in London 😉

  19. Hey Matt,

    Fantastic stuff, I just happen to have a bridge laying around. If you invest in it, you’ll triple your money in no time!

  20. Haha, and I like how the official national lottery uses a yahoo.co.uk email address.

  21. Pete’s comment about making things slightly convincing reminds me of an opposite situation I was in. There was a social engineering test at a large corporation, and it was a message from the IT group instructing users to go to a particular website and enter in their name and password. Anyone who did so then got their account revoked and had to sit through an information security class.

    The thing that tipped me off that this was fake was that it was sent in plain text, with proper grammar and punctuation. Normal messages from the IT group were usually in several colors and/or fonts with lots of misspellings and grammar mistakes. I knew something was wrong when it looked well-written.

  22. Well I have won at least 30 or more times now so I know how excited you must be feeling. Make sure you give them your credit card details as well, your tax file number, any pin numbers you might have and any other really important confidential stuff that you can thing of….it will really make the process that much easier for them so they can transfer the money easily.

  23. Hi
    What a co-incidence i also win a lottery from UK, but my question is why I ?
    and when i played? is it fraud? i don’t know.

  24. I’ve received three different mails like this, all of them told me that I won hundreds of millions of pounds, but I never been to UK, in actual fact, I am living in China from I born.

  25. Now that you are a millionaire, are you still working for Google? Or you’ll retire on some blue laguna in Pacific and write about fishes?
    Think about it! 🙂

  26. I didn’t think Google employees retired on such small change. Isn’t a million more like a holiday bonus?

  27. Congratulations!

    Maybe now you’ll won every week as I do ,-) And always it’s one million pounds £1,00,000


  28. FAKE!

  29. Hi Matt,

    I receive this email every week. I think I am a billionaire by now.

  30. Wow I’m so jealous – I’m in the UK and have never won the lottery ;(

    Congrats on your *win* 😉

  31. Aw, no fair. I got that email too. I’ll share the prize with you if you like?

  32. I have already won three times the Spanish lottery without ever setting a foot in Spain! I am even better than you and Madonna!

  33. Congrats, Matt
    I guess that you can afford now to invite the regular comments contributors here in Europe to visit Googleplex, test the “rich” food, say hello to the folks there 🙂

  34. LOL very good Matt… I’ll top that one… it was only last week that I became the beneficiary of £17,000,000 in cash and another £3,000,000 in gold bullion. All I have to do is give my bank account details and fly to Holland to aid a certain Mr. Pieter Van Stern (who is the rightful executor of Charles Taylor) and make arrangements to bring the money into the UK.

    In small print at the bottom it states I may have to give a speech to teh Sierra Leone assembly why I am the rightful heir apparent.

    I could probably talk about web development to them and best way forward for standards compliance and how well built websites that are cleanly coded work well in the search engines and to visitors. Not sure what else I would possibly say…. 🙂

  35. lol..

    i receive a lot of lottery related emails all the time.

  36. A million here, a million there, soon you’ll be talking about real money.

  37. Harith,

    The Googleplex is a bit far for me and I am not sure that I would get a visa to the USA since my pass is not up to the new regulations.
    I think Matt could save the money and come to the SES in Germany next year.

    I may then pop around (provided I get an entrance ticket since I am not in the SE business, just very interested -I just had my first act in SEO, I advised one of the homepage of a colleague out of an hidden link exchange network and to optimize the site following the rules. Seeing the site getting out of the end of the 4th page to #10 or 11 gave me an adrenalin kick that I enjoyed).
    SEO may be an option if I learn more and get bored of my actual job.

  38. What I wonder: What’s the purpose of this mail?
    I mean, to get your name & account number? And then what? Can just those numbers be used to get money from you?
    Or are they going to claim ” transfer costs” like all those nigirian princes who mail me?

  39. Well, you ain’t getting the whole amount, I don’t remember playing either but I won the same lottery!!!

  40. AhHa! Matt – you’ve been ‘chipped’. They saw you cross the border in-flight! Better schedule a full body scan asap and locate the little bugger. 😉

  41. i actually bought this for a second… i guess that means i’m doomed? 🙂

  42. >Can just those numbers be used to get money from you?

    It’s called identity theft. See http://www.identity-theft.org.uk/

  43. matt,

    The .com on UK search problem appears to have resurfaced. if you do a search on google.co.uk for bank charges, moneysavingexpert.com comes up top, but if you do a “UK” search we are down at 16, I am guessing that their is an algo problem here, if not sorry for wasting your time!

    I look forward to seeing you at SES tomorrow.


  44. Matt, great! Congratulations 🙂


  45. whilst in the UK please give the datacenter a kick up the …… please

  46. The really annoying thing is that British people who win the Thunderball jackpot mentioned only get a prize of £250,000. How come you colonials get four times as much? Is it because your Wednesday was on the 6th of February, while ours was on the 7th?

  47. Blimey, I was going to say “Luck of the Irish” but you’re not going to Dublin until later in the week are you?

    I just hope I’ve never missed out on a genuine e-mail like that because of an over-zealous spam filter. That would be disasterous! 🙂

  48. As someone else implied, it’s “rigged” – you have implemented a hidden source code hack to re-route any “lottery winning Emails” to anybody’s Gmail account to Matt.Cutts@gmail.com – who says it doesn’t pay to work at Google! 😉

    BTW, couldn’t help but notice that they left a phone number – while you are at SES London, you should call them during a presentation and pipe it over the PA system for all to hear.

  49. Most of this junk originates from Nigeria. They are very creative and work very hard at it. And it seems for almost every industry, they have a scam. Here is one we work against:


    Sadder still is people are constantly being taken in by this.


  50. Wow, the spammers have figured out your email address? Guess the spaminator should try to find out how they got your email….

  51. Great job!

  52. Aaron, a “bullock” is a young bull. They can be castrated but not always, we refer to all male cow babies as bullocks.

  53. I got a very similar email:

    Delivered-To: xxxxxxxxxxxxx@gmail.xxx
    Received: by 10.xx.xx.xx with SMTP id xxxxxxxxxx;
    Mon, 12 Feb 2007 10:11:17 -0800 (PST)
    Received: by 10.xx.xx.xx with SMTP id xxxxxxxxxxx;
    Mon, 12 Feb 2007 10:11:16 -0800 (PST)
    Received: from s1.mikas.or.at (s1.mikas.or.at [])
    by mx.google.com with ESMTP id xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx;
    Mon, 12 Feb 2007 10:11:16 -0800 (PST)
    Received-SPF: pass (google.com: domain of web143 at s1.mikas.or.at designates as permitted sender)
    Received: from localhost (localhost [])
    by s1.mikas.or.at (Postfix) with ESMTP id 8A83C4BEAAC
    for ; Mon, 12 Feb 2007 18:42:33 +0100 (CET)
    Received: from s1.mikas.or.at ([])
    by localhost (s1.mikas.or.at []) (amavisd-new, port 10024)
    with ESMTP id 24364-01 for ;
    Mon, 12 Feb 2007 18:42:33 +0100 (CET)
    Received: by s1.mikas.or.at (Postfix, from userid 1700)
    id 50F844BE56E; Mon, 12 Feb 2007 18:40:57 +0100 (CET)
    To: xxxxxxxxxx@gmail.xxx
    Subject: YOU HAVE WON
    X-PHP-Script: http://www.sarastro-lodge.com/main.php for,
    From: UK LOTTERY
    Reply-To: uklotto11@indiatimes.com
    MIME-Version: 1.0
    Content-Type: text/plain
    Content-Transfer-Encoding: 8bit
    Date: Mon, 12 Feb 2007 18:40:57 +0100 (CET)
    X-Virus-Scanned: by amavisd-new-20030616-p10 (Debian) at s1.mikas.or.at
    X-Amavis-Alert: BAD HEADER Improper use of control character (char 0D hex) in message header ‘MIME-Version’
    MIME-Version: 1.0rn ^


    We happily announce to you the draw of the UK NATIONAL LOTTERY, online
    Sweepstakes International program held on 20th December 2006. It is yet
    to be unclaimed and you are getting the final NOTIFICATION as regards
    this. Your e-mail address attached to the lucky numbers: 2, 3, 17,
    22, 40,
    42,And (Bonus ball(18), which subsequently won you the lottery in the
    category i.e JACKPOT. You have therefore been approved to claim a total
    sum of ?1,000,000(One Million Pounds Sterlings) in cash credited to
    file number KTU/902311832012/06 and Draw Number: 1137.

    This is from a total cash prize shared amongst the(7)lucky winners in
    this category i.e JACKPOT bonus. All participants for the online
    were selected randomly from World Wide Web sites through computer draw
    system and extracted from over 100,000 unions, associations, and
    bodies that are listed online. This is part of the Country’s Programme
    to fund
    for the Olympic Games in 2012 The?1.5bn Olympic lottery puzzle


    The Olympic fund-raising games will include a TV draw The National
    Lottery may have seemed a relatively simple way of helping pay for the
    Olympics. The Lottery must raise ?1.5bn over the next seven years to
    pay its
    share of the public money going into the Olympics. A further ?650m
    raised from council tax in London and another ?250m from the London
    Development Agency, while similar sums will be raised from ticket
    sales, marketing, sponsorship and the sale of television rights.

    Please note that your lucky winning number falls within our European
    booklet representative office in Europe as indicated in your play
    coupon. In view of this, you have won the sum of ?1,000,000 Pounds
    will be released to you by our payment office in UK. Our European agent
    immediately commence the process to facilitate the release of your
    funds as soon as you contact him. For security reasons, you are advised
    keep your winning information confidential till your claim is processed
    your money remitted to you in whatever manner you deem fit to claim
    your prize. This is part of our precautionary measure to avoid double
    claiming and unwarranted abuse of this program. Please be warned.

    Please Note that winnings must be claimed not later than 31th of
    March 2007. After this date allunclaimed funds will be included in our
    subsequent program coming up later in the year.

    Congratulations from our organization and thank you for
    being part of our promotional program.

    To file for your claim, please contact our Online Coordinator

    Bryan Mark

    Email: uklotto11@indiatimes.com

    Yours faithfully,
    Online Coordinator
    Sweepstakes International Program

  54. When will gmail have a “report 419” option?

  55. Matt, don’t forget to let us know if your jet lag remedies worked or not, and enjoy some chips and hard cider. I was about to recommend “StrongBow Cider” which I think is great, but just learned that although it’s the most popular un the UK, it’s mass produced, so maybe a microbrew cider would be a more authentic experience. In 1776 USA it was cider, not beer, that was the common colonial draught.

  56. Joe Duck, the remedies worked too well! The last two nights, I’ve stayed up until 12:30 am and waking up at 7:30 a.m. in the morning has been hard..

  57. By the way, I won again. This time for 2.5M pounds:

    “You have
    therefore been approved for a pay out of£2,543,170 For more
    details,contact our fiduciary agent:Name: MRS SUSAN THOMAS
    Email: susan@uknationallotteryaward.up2u.org.uk

  58. Matt,

    Are you pi**ed that they didn’t use gmail? 🙂

    Damn that Yahoo!

    By the way if you’re going out for a beer and I assume you’re staying nearer to Excel than anywhere else I recommend ‘All Bar One’ at Shad (that’s shad) Thames. It’s next to the restaurant where Blair and the Clinton had dinner whose name escapes me and the veiws of Tower Bridge are amazing…

    Any cabbie will know where it is.

  59. What you too? Now I have to share?

  60. I got a call once and the woman starts telling me I won this and that and a trip and money – I said “Is that right?” She said “You don’t sound too excited Mr Blick” and I said “Well, how much is this stroke of luck going to cost me?”
    Her reply “You have a nice day Mr. Blick” – and she hung up.

  61. Heh . . . somebody would go bankrupt when he/she would have to pay out the money to all those who got such an e-mail.

    The best money scam mail I ever got was one that told me that a diamond mine owner from South Africa died in a terrible car accident ( car drove down a cliff ) and I’m the only living relative on this planet and tha I’ll get 20.000.000 $ . . . yeah right, as if I would have luck to get more than 1$ from anybody. Heeeeey, if I’m the only living relative, then who the hell are the people I’m living with . . . killer clowns from outer space ? ? ?

    If I would have gotten all the money from those e-mails, I would own Google by now 😀

  62. OK, I was going to treat you to a dinner, but now I think you can afford to take us out 🙂

  63. Ha, you won the lottery?
    Me, I enlarged my penis. Several times a day!
    And all those interesting business contacts I have in Nigeria.
    Lottery…Lottery is for wimps! Everybody does that. But ME! I was chosen for those penis enlargement…hey….wait a minute…how did they know that it was not the size that…#!34CARRIER LOST

  64. The UK isn’t so backward that our national lottery uses a yahoo email account.

  65. German


    The Googleplex is a bit far for me and I am not sure that I would get a visa to the USA since my pass is not up to the new regulations.”

    Are you sure you need a visa to USA?

    From here we can enter USA and stay there for 3 months without visa.

    And Why I wish to visit Googleplex?
    Not only to visit WebSpam Team and say hello to Matt and Adam, but to make some friendship with the Crawl/index Team. You see we are moving during 2007 several very large sites to new platforms and we need all the friends we can get within Google Crawl/Index Team 🙂

  66. me too, me too!!, we are lucky Matt!

  67. Yeah, yeah, you won the lottery…but I’ve been pre-approved for about 50 mortgages that I didn’t even apply for! And at the lowest rate in years! Between constantly reconfirming my PayPal and eBay details, entering my social security number in the 5th-3rd-bank website, and all this free money, I hardly have time to tend to my long lost relatives in Nigeria that want me to help them get some money laundered.

  68. You’ve probably seen this by now and I apologise in advance for putting in this thread… thought you’d get a kick out of it.

    SEO Valentines Day Cards

    Keep doing what you are doing and come on down to Melbourne Australia… the beer is cold.


  69. what a wonderful world, isn’t it? you just open an email account and all the luck in the world is comming right to you!
    too bad that still there are a lot of people believing all this crap…

  70. Looks like there are more Winners 🙂 :
    ” for a lump sum pay out of £552,000,00 ”

    Mr Tom Hanks.
    Phone: +447011135347”

    Mr Tom Hanks 🙂

  71. I think the most worrying part is for them to be sending this, some people must be responding or surely they would be using some other technique?

  72. In a good week I generally win 2-3 lotteries.

    I’m just that lucky 🙂

  73. Some guys have all the luck! I only win thrid-world lotteries (but I win them almost every day!)

  74. I used to get a dozen or so of these scum fishing email a day until I routed all my mail through Gmail! Gmail Rocks.

    Can you do something about your spam protection, I just had to take my socks off to work out the result, then I got it wrong 3 times!

  75. I’ve won the lottery many times and Paypal has problems with such a huge amount of money: They keep forgetting my password and often send me email to reenter it. I’ve enlarged almost every organ. It seems I’m a next kin of every dead rich person (what a destiny). When I got an email explaining how easy and cheap it is to get BSc, MSc I become a surgeon in a couple of days. I believe it couldn’t be too hard I’ll just get myself a job now and practice..

  76. I wonder if people really fall for this type of scam. Treacherous days we wander about in.

  77. You can’t have won that because … I did!!
    I also received it this morning, I wonder how much did they sent.

  78. Matt, that nothing compared to the money the offer me in from Africa. Every day someone wants to share their millions with me, I guess its because I am such a likeable guy.

    “Dear Sir,
    I am contacting you confidentially concerning the immediate transfer of an
    amount of money from here in Abidjan West Africa.The funds is about Ten Million
    America Dollars and is currently in a bank here in a suspense account and I want
    you to help me receive the money via your bank account to enable me come over to
    meet with you immediately it is transferred, for the sharing of the funds as I
    have agreed to offer you 20% of the total sum, as your reward, for assinsting
    me, while the rest 80% will remain in your bank account until I arrange my visa
    and come over to meet with you.
    Please send me your direct telephone number so that I can call and talk with you
    in details.

  79. Seriously you are a millionaire. I have won this lottery about five times. It has changed my life. But i dont know why this email is always found in junk.

  80. Matt this is your *third* win dude…first was on August 19, 2004 at 11:56 am. Google IPO.

  81. I knew you had it in you Matt!

    On a sidenote: Do you know anyone that represents Live.com Search or MSN Search that has a job similar to yours?

    Google ranks one of my sites really high, but MSN completely dropped me and a ton of other people….just trying to figure out why still…

    Any updates from MSFT about using the universal sitemaps?

  82. I get 2-3 in my mail of those per day 🙂

  83. I’ve kept an ongoing site as a record on just about every 419, lottery scam, charity scam and uniquely typed phising attempt that has made it’s way through my spam filters. I get much less of these today, but according to the comments, especially on the pages about the UK National Lottery, this is incredibly common today.

    The problem with these mails is that lots of people who don’t have English as their primary language can’t spot the spelling errors, and really believe that they have suddenly become the richest person in their home town. People from Ukraine, the Arabic world, south-eastern Europe, northern Africa… I get lots of comments from those people, and even though I publish every mail with a clear record that it is nothing but a scam, they contact me with questions on how to get their winnings…

    It’s sad, and there doesn’t seem to be a police force in the world that really cares about this. (Except maybe, and ironically, the Nigerian police.)


  84. I also have those kind of emails… those phishers re desperate…..

  85. “contact our fiduciary agent:Name: MRS SUSAN THOMAS

    Are you going to set up the video camera and call her while it’s still a local call? WIth that and your SEO Videos, you might get one of those awards movie people always seem to be handing out.

  86. you are the lucky one 🙂

  87. Wow Matt,

    That’s a strange coincidence, because only this morning I was commenting to the folks in the office how lucky I was to win this lottery…. not once, but TWICE!!!

    Does this mean I have to share the winnings with you???

    Gee, I suppose I could agree to that 😉

    BUT, only if you agree to tweak the google algorithm to give us #1 on your listings forever more for the keyword phrases: SEO & Search Engine Optimization!


    Way to go Matt! I had a good laugh at this coincidence. Keep them coming.

    Eran Malloch
    WCR Internet Marketing
    Perth, Western Australia

    PS: What’s even better… I didn’t even have to leave the office to win. You had to go to the UK! LOL Enjoy – its a great country! 🙂

  88. Heh, we’re very generous here in the UK you know 🙂

  89. Matt – Can you follow Bill Gates’s lead and set up a charity – to teach spammers how to write and count? Never mind the spurious e mail address attempt, who is going to trust someone who can’t count? “£1,00,000 (One million pounds sterling)” should be £1,000,000 or else you’ve been diddled (what’s “diddled” you might ask – ask someone at the conference).

    The “Matt Cutts” bursary could sponsor students to send spam that is grammatically correct and plausible, and, of course, within the guidelines of Google.

    At least they quoted the amount in Sterling pounds, rather than US dollars. Don’t spend it all at once.

  90. Matt, if that money’s weighing you down, I know a very nice pub just ’round the corner here in Farnborough where you can spend at least a little of that cash on some nice English Ale and a hot meal 😀

  91. The really sad thing is that these scams work. If they didn’t work, they would stop sending them out. That goes for the tons of viagra spam as well.

  92. Matt,

    Thank you for getting the .com /UK problem fixed, let’s hope it sticks this time?!

    On the boost and block idea, I understand the issue of personalisation probably being more of a “profiling”, but for individualisation (boost and block) couldn’t you get round this by parsing the results through the Google Desktop before displaying them or would that slow the system down too much?

    Hope the idea isn’t tooo stupid, I just love the idea of giving sites I like a lift, without having to scroll to get to them.

    Thanks again and great to meet you.


  93. Friends!

    Wish to see a transcript of what Matt’s said at those 45 min at SES. Anybody knows where to find it?


  94. Hey Matt,

    How’s about a little scambait action on your part? We could all help you out.

    NOTE: none of the following letter represents a personal viewpoint. I’m just trying to help screw with someone’s head.

    Dear Mr. Field,

    Thank you very much for this wonderful prize opportunity! However, I do not have a bank account at this time, as it was seized in a late-night CIA raid of Google-related assets (as you may well know, I am an Google employee). This is one of the major reasons behind the Google IPO…to raise the funds that were taken from us by the despotic Bush administration.

    However, I plan on leaving Google and starting up my own company with the winnings from this lottery. I plan to sell low-calibre ammunition and weaponry to the elderly, since there is a large market among our aging population for guns and ammo. In lieu of cash, I would like to offer you a 25% stake in my new company, Guns and Ammo for Grandma, Inc. Would this be acceptable? Please advise.


    Matt Cutts

    Have some fun with this, dude. You know you wanna. 😉

  95. There are a couple ways to interpret this….

    “Maybe they read the blog and entered me”

    I am sure they entered millions of people =)

  96. That’s a truly evil thing to do Matt, but then again, it’s a scammer.

    I remember seeing an article or news clipping somewhere once about people who made these scammers jump through loop after loop to see how far they could scam the scammer.

  97. Spammers have the chance of earning of legal $$ by *spamming*
    ” Promotional product of the Day” and paying Govt. Tax. Wait, will Google follow that strategy? 😛

  98. As far as I remember, German law obliges the sender to pay the promised win … You’re probably living in the wrong country, Matt, like your benefactor 😉

  99. DaXtermGuy: you’re probably thinking of http://www.419eater.com . These guys completely destroy whatever fake bank/Nigerian scams they can get their hands on. One guy even sent a Nigerian garbage 3 or 4 times over a 6-month period. (Look up “Anus Laptops” on the board and you’ll kill yourself laughing.)

  100. Ha ha ha… I enjoyed reading all the entries for this blog. I can’t believe that the spammers are still sending these types of emails; the sad part, is that people still fall for scams like this!

  101. Hah that’s nothing!
    I’ve won the national lottery 7 times in the last month!
    I have several different emails with different reply addresses to prove it 🙂

  102. LMAO, at first I thought you were serious.

  103. Next stop Dublin..and next post on this blog might as well read:

    Matt Cutts Win Irland National Lottery 🙂

  104. Matt,
    When you get a chance, you have to read this post. It’s priceless and directly related to your ‘lottery’ win.


    It’s even better if you are a fan of the old “fraser” show. This site is all about those lottery and similar scams.

  105. I have won billions when i was on yahoo but since 2 years back i switched to gmail i havent won a single penny 🙁 the billions i won i couldnt redeem because i changed my email service and dont know what happened after giving them my bank account number and sending my Credit Card which was suppose to be returned with the amount loaded on it. I have changed my physicle adress too. With one hope i check my gmail everyday to see if i have won again.

  106. the real kicker here is that they’ll probably make a couple thousand bucks on this scam.

    They ought to earn something for entertaining us so much!!!!

  107. whats amazing is there are people who will fall for this.. so sad 🙁

  108. I have won the lottery many times but the scam that is really interesting is the one that needs someone in the US help transfer funds from an inheritance in another country. For this help, you get a portion of the money.

    I haven’t followed up to much on the details so I don’t know how the complete scam works.

    I got a new one this week about a debit card from a bank that I have never had an account with. I didn’t check this one out either.

    It would be interesting to find out how many people fall for these scams and actually lose money in them.

  109. Haha Welcome to England Matt!

    I hope you didn’t fly with British Airways! They announced this week they are charging people who check-in more than one bag per person.. Have fun in London, I’m in Oslo unfortunately next week, otherwise I would of gone.

  110. The biggest lottery in china is coming u p with 1 billion Dollar annual prizes this is goona be the best in the worls

  111. They do, Trevor. Again, check out http://www.419eater.com (no that’s not my site…I just find it thoroughly entertaining) and anything to do with “Anus Laptops”. Lookit all the nice stuff they get! Look at it! Top-quality brand-name Anus Laptops, direct from http://www.anuslaptops.com (also not mine) … Put Your Business In Our Anus!

  112. Dear Matt,

    also known at this part of the world..
    By the way, how was it in UK?


  113. I went to a friend’s house to do homework, and caught her filling out the form that was sent to her by a “fudiciary agent”. She was supposedly related to some Dr Stein in Egypt. He was doing research and came across her name. I said, “Yeah he was researching – he was getting people’s names and email addresses from their chat profiles.” I told her to get her real name out of the profile and stop trusting these idiots. Then I copied and pasted the initial email they sent her, and Googled it – lo and behold the same email with different senders popped up on a bunch of websites that listed it as a scam.

  114. Hi ,

    yahoo spam-mails seems to be usual…

    I become also spam-mails but not from yahoo, i become them from google-mail.

    I thought spamfilter and so on are in g-mail included, perhaps thats right but only for email receive? Not for email send from google-mail?

    Here is the last google-mail spammer : sumaoptimierung@gmail.com

  115. Matt, I am afraid I have some bad news… You must be a resident in the UK to be eligible for entry into the National Lottery, furthermore it is illegal to participate in the lottery whilst located in the US, therefore your claim is null and void and your winnings will be given to charity…

  116. ”Thank you very much for this wonderful prize opportunity! However, I do not have a bank account at this time, as it was seized in a late-night CIA raid of Google-related assets (as you may well know, I am an Google employee). ” 😉

  117. I get such mails daily!!! [:D]

  118. Great, you won 1,000,000…so throw a lousy grand my way!!!! Cheers

  119. Never mind Matt.

    The maximum win on the UK Thunderball is only £250,000.


  120. i get those email atleast once a day.

    i dont know where it comes and even it report it as spam in gmail, it still coming in. Any ideas matt?

  121. this guys are getting nessary information(mail. adress. phone&cell number) and buying products on the web from u’r name… i’ve also got this kinda message that i won ;)))

  122. I won again today!

  123. Congratulations.

  124. post something useful…are you out of ideas now?

  125. Lol, Matt. That’s nothing! Did you know that Indian spammers are actually making cold calls after they send you emails? The UK lottery and the Nigerian scams are spam classics. I give it to the spammers: the cold calls are something new.

  126. Matt,

    Quote from you at SES London when we were chatting

    “the personalisation has been quite gentle so far, but it is probably about time that the dial should be cranked up a bit?!”

    Soothsayer indeed! I just had a message when I signed in at the weekend saying that my results would be “more personalised”, is this something that is being tested or rolled out across the board?

    It caused a bizarre result in adwords by the way which I sent to the inside adwords team. I figured you might be interested too…

    I was playing with my personalized search over the weekend and was looking to see where our website came up under the phrase “Martin Lewis” in the natural results.

    Bizarrely, the adwords result that showed was for http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/children which had Martin Lewis in the creative, but Martin Lewis was not in the keywords. I then went into the account to confirm that this was correct (it was) and repeated the search in a new browser (still signed in to personalized search) and got the same result. I then added Martin lewis as a negative keyword and that removed it.

    I know personalized search has been cranked up a bit, so is that why this happened and should it have happened?!

  127. Neeraj

    “post something useful…are you out of ideas now?”

    Matt has been in UK and Irland during the last week or so. Therefore no posts 🙂

  128. Matt
    I found a fraud with the name of google like this lottery.
    they mail me as a google webmaster and said I can submit my site in google



    GOOGLE SUBMISSION can guarantee the inclusion of your site on the most significant and well-known search engine in the world within less than 15 working days.

    For further information, click here.

    Google is a registered trademark of Google Inc., Mountain View, CA (USA)


    GOOGLE SUBMISSION puede garantizar la introducción de tu sitio en el más importante y famoso motor de búsqueda del mundo en un tiempo inferior a 15 días laborales.

    Para más información haz clic aquí.

    Google es una marca registrada Google Inc., Mountain View, CA (ESTADOS UNIDOS)


    GOOGLE SUBMISSION est en mesure de garantir le référencement de votre site sur le moteur de recherche le plus important et renommé au monde dans un délai inférieur à 15 jours ouvrables.

    Pour plus d’informations, cliquer ici.

    Google est une marque enregistrée Google Inc., Mountain View, CA (USA)

    Remove me

    This E-Mail is Not Spam. We respect to Spam Policy. & We will never Disturb you again. Please kindly send us a blank email for removal request.

    Thank You

    and their website is > http://googlesubmission.info/

    I think it is not related with google.


  129. That’s smart, posting the email addresses here in public. It will ensure they get a metric ton of spam, considering how popular this blog is.

  130. Gee Matt, how does it feel to be a millionaire? (Is it still a millionaire if the currency is pounds??) 😉

    Anyway, I just started reading your blog about a week ago and have already read several posts and am hungry for more! Keep up the great work.

  131. My Gmail is actally quite good in keeping me away from those good news about winning the lottery.

  132. I just started receiving these 419 scams in German!

  133. Whats about a person who lives in a remote area(a village in Pakistan), never used internet. illetrate but still he won spanish national lottery!
    I am surprised how they can find his real name & complete address.

  134. Congrates!! Matt……………..

    Its really unbeleavable for me…that u have won 1 million………..

    Congartes! Once again and all the best ……..

  135. You lucky, lucky bastard.

  136. It’s unbelievable for him and most of the rest of us, too.

  137. What is more unbelievable is that someone somehow missed the dripping sarcasm.

  138. Nice! I want win too. I hope that´s true!


    Ronaldo Nunes (From Brazil)

  139. Hi Matt

    We have a tradition here in England-in fact we have several. But the one you just encountered was the “Trick an American” tradition.

    Well done boys!

    The funniest thing was the yahoo email!

    A while ago I was getting 20 of these scams per day. Just imagine the bandwidth used up. The scams I was getting were mostly a Nigerian tradition…

    Next time buy a lottery ticket!


  140. I keep wondering when these scammers are going to upgrade to a gmail account…. 🙂 Last summer, it seems I got at least ten of those a day.

  141. UK Lottery E-mail Scams Warning
    There has been an ever-growing number of UK lottery e-mail scams that have been turning up both in my mailbox and the mailboxes of visitors to this site – my first piece of advice is that you should always ignore them and delete them. Sadly, not everyone does, so I’ll explain below how these scams operate. Note: I don’t want copies of your scam e-mails sent to me – there’s nothing whatsoever I can do about them!
    Latest: I’ve had multiple independent reports that suggest the scammers are starting to use snail mail (Post Office mail) to target potential victims in a very similar manner to their lottery e-mail scams. The same advice applies – bin any letters you receive, ignore them and do not reply to them.

    Firstly, the scammer has to construct a reasonably convincing-sounding “you’ve won the lottery” e-mail, so they’re now tending to throw in verifiable correct facts in there to make it sound legitimate. The three most common things they put in are:

    The draw number, date, winning numbers and jackpot amount of a recent UK lottery draw. Note that it won’t always be the latest one – quite often, it’s a few weeks old. Why would they take so long to e-mail you that you’ve you such a huge prize? Answer: they’re scammers and are probably a few weeks behind sending out bulk e-mails to potential victims with info from previous draws to catch up to the most recent one…

    The name and/or address of something legitimate that’s lottery related. Favourites include Camelot’s full postal address (both the Olympia Way one in London and the P.O. Box one in Watford have been used) and, quite irritatingly, my name (Richard K. Lloyd), which people Google for and hence I get a constant stream of people asking if the scam e-mail they received is legitimate or not (and if you think about it, why ask me – what credentials do I have to verify such e-mails ?!).

    A graphical attachment is often included with the e-mail – this can range from the blue National Lottery “crossed fingers” official logo (which you have to get permission from Camelot to use), an embedded graphic of this site’s lottery balls for a particular draw (the cheek!), a scanned copy of the (fake) “winning” cheque or a bogus “winners certificate”.
    Of course, they then blow this to smithereens by using a free Webmail-based e-mail account (e.g. yahoo.co.uk, hotmail.com and so on) to send their scam e-mail from – do you really think Camelot (who run the UK lottery) would ever send e-mail to end-users from a Yahoo! Mail or Hotmail account? Nope, they never would and this should be enough to stop you dead in your tracks and delete the scam e-mail.

    It should be noted here that the only legal place to buy UK lottery tickets (and, yes, you have to buy them – there is no such thing as a “free UK lottery sweepstake” in existence) on the Internet is at the official UK lottery site located at http://www.national-lottery.co.uk/ and even then you need a UK address and a UK debit card. Any other site that says it sells UK lottery tickets is breaking the law. If you have not bought your ticket from either an official UK lottery physical terminal (e.g. in a UK newsagent, UK supermarket etc.) or from the official site mentioned above, then you *cannot* win a UK lottery prize.

    Note that even Camelot themselves have now stopped e-mailing people who won via an online ticket (and not a moment too soon – you now have to log into the official Web site to discover you’ve won, which is as it should be). Hence, any person/organisation sending you e-mail saying you’ve won a (usually large) prize on the UK lottery is lying, it’s as simple as that.

    The first e-mail you will receive will usually avoid mentioning any “processing/claim/courier fee” that you’ll have pay to them – this is to try to hook you in to the scam and not scare you off right away. Instead, the scammer will ask for as much personal information as possible (full name, address, date of birth etc.) – this is useful for them if you get so deep into the scam that they might want to try forging documents with your info on them. Don’t give them any info (you deleted that e-mail anyway didn’t you ?).

    The scammer will often say “don’t tell anyone about this win” (by “anyone”, they probably mean the police, so that they won’t be tracked down and prosecuted !), which is a very silly instruction for them give if you think about it. Who are they to say who you can and can’t tell that you’ve “won” the lottery ?

    If you are foolish enough to have started up a phone or e-mail conversation with the scammers, they will inevitably try to get a “claim fee” from you to process the lottery win. Let me see – you’ve “won” a lottery you never entered in the first place and now you’re expected to pay possibly thousands of pounds to someone you’ve never heard of to get hold of “winnings” that they provide no proof whatsoever even exists ?! If you haven’t twigged it’s a scam at this point, you’re quite a naive person to say the least.

    Sadly, if you have fallen for the scam and actually sent them money, then you probably have no chance of recovering the money you sent, especially if it’s to a different country (that fact that someone outside the UK would be involved in a UK lottery really should have set alarm bells ringing). If it’s within your own country, perhaps contacting the police might be a start or possibly the standards trading officers for the county involved, but I don’t hold out much hope of ever getting your money back.

    Some more reading on this subject to further enlighten you:

    The official Camelot site’s Security Advice
    Months after I put this page up warning about scams, Camelot finally did something similar. Because of their tardiness (especially poor since scam e-mails often mention the official site and Camelot’s postal address!), I’ve been fielding way too many “I’d like to claim my prize” e-mails, which hopefully will now go to the official site Webmaster and not me (update: nope, still getting a stream of queries about scam e-mails, ho hum).

    The UK Government’s Consumer Direct Scams Factsheet
    Basically says the same thing as this page (don’t communicate with them and delete any messages from them). Note how there’s nothing about reporting them to the authorities (little point, because they’re usually non-UK-based, use fake names and free Webmail accounts).

    BBC News: How not to win a million
    Interesting article, including some bloke from the Midlands who was conned out of almost 20,000 Euros.

    The Dutch Lottery Scam
    Recently made even more infamous by an amusing Egg advertisement on UK TV (Windows Media or Quicktime required for the ad). This page is handy because it gives you some useful advice on how to report advance fee frauds.

    Fraudwatch International’s lottery scams section
    A shockingly high number of lottery fraudsters out there!

    Please note – although scammers have used my name in their fraudulent e-mails, I am NOT involved in any way with any of these scams. Having read this page, I hope you realise that I don’t need to be e-mailed about these scams – if they use my name and claim you’ve won the lottery, they are fraudulent and should be ignored. I did get one very funny UK lottery scam e-mail though which I think is worth sharing with you , but sadly, it was the exception to the rule.

    11.4% of enlightened visitors here use Firefox or SeaMonkey – why not join them?
    © Richard K. Lloyd & Connect Internet Solutions Limited 2007
    Part of MerseyWorld – promoting Liverpool and its surrounding

  142. Congrats!!! I’m actually off to Africa to oversee the transfer of a very large sum…

  143. i’ve won uk lottery several times already w/o playing it. i’ve been selected as a beneficiary of the kin of such deceased president of somewhere several time already.

    obviously, this is just a scam. 😉

    it’s funny when I received an email coming from philippine sen. loi ejercito claiming that her what-appears-to-be deceased husband (former president erap estrada) has had millions and would like to transfer some to my bank a./c. heck, i’m a filipino and have been living in the philippines since birth! 😀 i know that ex-pres. erap estrada is still Breathing (though incarcerated becoz of an ongoing plunder case that marked, or rather marred, his presidency).

  144. I’m getting quite ANNOYED at the consistent batch of such lottery spam emails I’ve been getting. Many of them are so terribly stupid. Either that, or they would solicit my help in their business opportunity or whatever. What gets me even more annoyed is that most of these are in LARGE CAPS.

    At least google is doing a good job of putting them in the Bulk Mail folder but some do keep creeping in. Argh!

    If this gets worse, I may start using onlymyemail since I’m one of those people who gets upset to see stuff in my Bulk mail folder.

  145. It’s somewhat comforting to know that even Google employees get spam, just like us regular folk.

    At the same time, it’s kinda scary. If you can’t beat it, who can?

  146. HEY HEY HEY !!!!!! lets have a party on me LOL hahahaa i got a love letter from Susan also …I have to meet this women ..shes gotta Job !!!!!
    always wanted a women with a job ..alas poor me i could use the doe ..dang just like all women build you up to let you down ..WELL!!! back to the drawing board… mmm have an idea ..how about yalls sending me a dollar

    Thanks for the humor
    The Stoneman


    Hi, I just got one of those weird emails (2nd one so far the first being some conster in holland with an african voice)

    i never took part in any lottery , let alone an irish one, but they still get you going don’t they????

    sent off email to man with strange name i mean mat ok , but mat idea HE didn’t have a bad idea did he now???

    well have been had once again, sent off email – curiousity killed the cat, generosity brought it back!! why don’t they do these rotten things to the richer people?????? anyway sent off email but suspect they will ask for bank acc. in which case no way mcKay!!! will just say “send me a cheque then”!! are we all suckers or what lol to all of you who have been “had” too ……..scots person living in spain (see wouldn’t have got it anyway, would have had to be living in UK/Ireland

  148. Wow, I got one of these as well….

    It was really lucky I had won, because I needed a spare £2 million to pass to this guy in Nigeria who said he was going to give me the proceeds of an ex-dictators bank account.

    Happy days!

  149. I just recieved an email on the same UK lotto winning of $1million in silver pounds.All they asked was name, address, age, occupation, and country. It was from “Yahoo/MSN/UK lotto which I never entered. They want me to pay the courier for sending the money. Sounds strange. If I won a real prize, isn’t shipping included? They say they can’t take money from the prize to ship. After reading your emails, I guess they will try to get money via courier, Credit card accounts, ect. Some things that sound too good to be true usually are. Thanks for sharing.

  150. It’s not so funny after the first hundred or so wins like I have had. I expect to reach my first billion in a few weeks. They are even using gmail addresses now. How do I complain to Google?

  151. It’s not so funny after the first hundred or so wins like I have had. I expect to reach my first billion in a few weeks. They are even using gmail addresses now. How do I complain to Google? 🙁

  152. I’d use vista in a couple of months. But how much better could Office get? How much could you change?

  153. Wow, I got one of these as well….

    It was really lucky I had won, because I needed a spare £2 million to pass to this guy in Nigeria who said he was going to give me the proceeds of an ex-dictators bank account.

    Happy days!

  154. We are in the midst of converting to Vista, one computer at a time. My husband is really having fun with it and loves all the new (WOW) features. I have not converted yet because I have heard that not all programs run on it. But I am sure it is a matter of time.

  155. I live in California and I got several emails about winning millions of dollars. I called two places and was answered by Nigerians. They want me to sent money to cover shipping costs, to be deposited in by Western Union. If that money goes there is no way to recover it. They are using English names that sound like you will be talking to a Caucasian. These seems like a freek.

    I asked them if this was real but the said it was.

    Somebody out there tell me the truth before I get swindled.


  156. That’s smart, posting the email addresses here in public. It will ensure they get a metric ton of spam, considering how popular this blog is.

  157. The Dutch Lottery Scam
    Recently made even more infamous by an amusing Egg advertisement on UK TV (Windows Media or Quicktime required for the ad). This page is handy because it gives you some useful advice on how to report advance fee frauds.

    thank you

  158. That’s smart, posting the email addresses here in public. It will ensure they get a metric ton of spam, considering how popular this blog is.

  159. I live in California and I got several emails about winning millions of dollars. I called two places and was answered by Nigerians. They want me to sent money to cover shipping costs, to be deposited in by Western Union. If that money goes there is no way to recover it. They are using English names that sound like you will be talking to a Caucasian. These seems like a freek.

  160. the real kicker here is that they’ll probably make a couple thousand bucks on this scam.

    They ought to earn something for entertaining us so much!!!!


  161. I’ve read manage to get reasonably current events on their front page within a day or 2 of the event

  162. i also received an email this morning from the uk-national lottery to notify me that i won 1,000.000.00 british pounds

  163. Hey Matt, I’ve recently discovered your blog. I found this post particularly interesting because I have in fact won the lottery. I can’t believe that people still think someone will fall for these dumb scams. If you bought a ticket, you’ll know if you won or not!
    Keep up the great blog! I’ll be reading every day.


  164. thanks That’s smart, posting the email addresses here in public. It will ensure they get a metric ton of spam, considering how popular this blog is.

  165. i actually bought this for a second… i guess that means i’m doomed? thanks for your subject. it is very important for internet users.i will write your site .. please write

    me back. thank you

  166. LOL so funny as the maximum jackpot for the thunderball lottery is £250,000

  167. Well folks..hate to bring the bad news to you but I have won various lotteries, grant payments, contract payments( for work I have never done), inheritance (from people I don’t know) etc etc…about 15 thousand times, literally (about 30-40 times per day). I guess I am just the luckiest guy on the planet or for that matter in the universe. I’m still waiting for the first payment.

  168. thanks That’s smart, posting the email addresses here in public. It will ensure they get a metric ton of spam, considering how popular this blog is.