A 65 year-old Kenly man lost several thousand dollars in a sweepstakes scam. The victim said he received a phone call in October from an individual claiming they were with Publishers Clearing House (PCH).
The scammer claimed the victim had won a large cash prize, but first he had to send in an $800 fee to process the winnings. After sending the money through the US Postal Service, the victim said he was instructed to send an additional $5,400 to cover additional fees. He complied and send the money.
Finally, the victim said he received another phone call requesting an additional $4,000 to cover more expenses before his prize money could be awarded. He refused and contacted local authorities. Altogether the victim lost $6,200.
Publishers Clearing House says they never email or call their big winners. All prizes of $500 or more are sent certified mail or are delivered in person. You never have to pay to receive a sweepstakes prize from PCH or any other legitimate organization.
And you don’t need to give out your bank account information, driver’s license or social security number when you enter a contest. If you have questions you can call the sweepstakes company directly.
Another PCH scam involves scammers claiming you have won a prize. They send you a check and ask that you return some of the money. It turns out the checks they send are counterfeit.