If you won’t be able to remain anonymous when you collect your winnings, shut down your social media accounts in advance, Kurland said.
“The media will try to find as many pictures of a winner as possible, and social media is the first place to look,” Kurland said. “You also want to make sure there’s as little personal information out there like your phone number or address.”
While any determined snooper or scammer could probably track that information down, you don’t want to make it easy for them. If you have a landline phone, make sure it’s unlisted before you head to lottery headquarters.
Kurland said he advises his big-jackpot winners to skip town immediately after claiming their prize.
“Just being out of town for a few days can help,” Kurland said. “In this 24-hour news cycle, the interest in a winner will hopefully disappear after a few days. If you can avoid being around for a week, you might be able to escape the initial exposure.”
Consider spending effects
Even in states that let you collect your winnings anonymously, lottery officials might be legally permitted to reveal the town where you live.
“Everyone there will be looking around to see who is spending more, who quit their job, who is taking big vacations,” Kurland said. “Winners should enjoy their new-found wealth, but if anonymity is a main concern, it can be a difficult balance to strike.”