Over 20,000 people were recently told that they’d won the United States visa lottery on the State Department website. But two weeks later, the State Department said they were going to have to redraw the numbers because of a computer glitch.
“Any results previously posted and available through the website are considered invalid,” said a statement from the department. “We sincerely regret any inconvenience of disappointment this problem might have caused.”
Those who thought they’d won told the Associated Press that they were upset to find that it was a mistake, especially since they’d already started to make plans and the government didn’t reveal the mistake for a couple of weeks – as well as the likelihood of lightning striking twice, or being selected in the random draw twice – being very slim
The United States Visa Lottery, also known as the Diversity Visa Program or the Green Card lottery, makes 50,000 visas available for people in countries with low immigration rates to the United States. The people who are chosen can then apply for permanent residence in the United States. In order to qualify for the 2012 United States visa lottery, applicants had to submit their entries in the fall of last year. In total, the government received 14.7 million entries.
The United States Visa Lottery has been conducted electronically for the past 15 years, but this is the first time a problem like this has occurred
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