There have been instances of fraudulent websites posing as official U.S. Government sites. Some companies posing as the U.S. Government have sought money in order to “complete” lottery entry forms. To learn more, please see the Federal Trade Commission Warning. The only official way to apply for the DV lottery is directly through the official U.S. Department of State Website during the specified and limited-time registration period. Applicants selected in the Diversity Visa random drawing are notified by the Department of State, Kentucky Consular Center by letter, NOT email and are provided instructions on how to proceed to the next step in the process. No other organization or private company is authorized by the Department of State to notify Diversity Visa lottery applicants of their winning entry, or the next steps in the processing of applying for their visa.
International Scams – For more information about international scams involving internet dating, inheritance, work permits, overpayment, and money-laundering please visit the official DV Lottery’ International Financial Scams page.
Scammers send spam emails pretending to be from the U.S. government congratulating the recipient that they have been selected in the Visa Lottery. These schemes often use a spoof U.S. government website. They may have domain names similar to government agencies, official-looking emblems (eagles, flags, or other American images like the Statue of Liberty or the U.S. Capitol), the official seals or logos, links to other government sites, and list Washington, D.C. as mailing addresses.
If you wish to file a complaint about Internet fraud, please see http://www.econsumer.gov/english/ or go to Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3), or to report about unsolicited email, contact Department of Justice contact us page.
Important to remember while applying for diversity visa:
* Applicants never have to pay any fee until they come in person to the Embassy for their interview. Any communication that asks for money or bank account information to be sent in advance is a scam.
* Do not click on to any websites in these scam messages. The act of opening these links can make you vulnerable to viruses or other malicious codes. Information about the Diversity Visa Lottery can be found at http://www.travel.state.gov.
* Winners of the diversity visa lottery have to be interviewed. To establish their eligibility, they must provide proof of a high school education or its equivalent, or show two years of work experience in an occupation that requires at least two years of training or experience within the past five years. Those selected need also process their immigrant visa applications before departure.
* The U.S. Embassy continues to invite those wishing to enter DV lottery, and ask them to submit online at www.dvlottery.state.gov (this site is only accessible during the application period, normally lasts for two months only: October – November). Paper entries or mail-in requests are not accepted.