Lottery thankfully sends a second e-mail after winner disregards first one as a scam
By Kate Northrop
A Canadian lottery winner might not have claimed a $1 million (US$752,731) prize if it were not for a second alert e-mail from the Ontario Lottery.
An Ontario man deleted an e-mail notifying him of a $1 million Maxmillions win thinking it was a scam.
While the first reaction of many lottery players would be to take a moment of pause upon receiving an e-mail alerting them of a million-dollar win, Bin Bin Liu, 40, of Richmond Hill, didn't give it a second thought.
"I saw an e-mail from OLG and deleted it, thinking it was a scam," the father told the Lottery.
It's common sense for many players to assume e-mails of that nature are fraudulent, since most lotteries will not notify winners by e-mail if they won. It is also impossible to win a lottery you did not buy a ticket for, and for that reason, many recipients of scam e-mails are able to notice the fraud right away.
However, Liu did in fact sign up for a lottery subscription in September, and it's a good thing the Ontario Lottery sent a second e-mail soon after he deleted the first. Liu decided it was worth looking into and logged into his OLG account.
As it turns out, Liu had won a $1 million Maxmillions prize in the Sept. 9 Lotto Max draw.
"When I saw $1 million, it was amazing!" he told the Lottery.
Liu realized he had won late at night and woke his sleeping wife to tell her the good news, but she also took some convincing.
"She thought I was joking," the winner recalled. "When I showed her, she still didn't believe me."
Liu's wife still did not believe him, even when he went out to collect his prize at the OLG Prize Center.
"Maybe when I show her the check, she'll finally see it's real," he laughed.
The winnings will go toward his children's education, he said, and a big celebration dinner with his family was the first item on his to-do list.
"I'm over-excited," he remarked while holding the oversized check. "It feels heavy in my hand, considering it's a piece of paper."
Liu bought his winning ticket on the OLG's website.
When the multi-province jackpot for Lotto Max reaches $70 million (US$51.1 million), any additional money that would normally be added to the jackpot rollover is instead awarded in a series of $1 million Maxmillions drawings. All tickets purchased for the Lotto Max drawing are eligible for the Maxmillions draws.
On Sept. 9 there were a total of six Maxmillions drawings. The winning numbers for the Lotto Max draw were 1, 2, 15, 18, 29, 32, and 36, with Bonus 9.