Winner of Mega Millions can stay anonymous thanks to state's law

Millions of lottery tickets were purchased this week, but the public might never find out who won the second-biggest lottery in American history.

That's because the winning ticket was purchased in South Carolina, one of a handful of states where Mega Millions winners can choose to be anonymous.

Showing a winner waving a big check at a news conference may draw interest to the games, but officials and lawmakers say anonymity can protect winners from being targeted by criminals and unscrupulous people coming out of the woodwork asking for money.

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Winning Mega Millions ticket sold in South Carolina. Katherine Scott reports during Action News at 12:30 p.m. on October 24, 2018.

Proponents of publicizing the winners' names generally say it maintains the integrity of the games and it's a matter of government transparency.

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Local winners claim Mega Millions prize: Maggie Kent reports on Action News at 6 p.m., October 24, 2018

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