Another scam preying on the Publisher’s Clearinghouse Sweepstakes has begun to surface in southeastern Indiana and could very well be occurring statewide. Though not a new scam, it has been successful for the scammers in other areas of the United States.
The scam works like this: a person will receive a phone call advising them they have placed second or third in the Publisher’s Clearinghouse Sweepstakes and have won hundreds of thousands of dollars. Those receiving the calls are asked to wire money via Western Union to cover taxes and processing fees. Indiana State Police say, DO NOT DO IT.
ISP asks Hoosiers who receive a call such as this to ask yourself this question: “Did I enter the Publisher’s Clearinghouse Sweepstakes?” If you didn’t enter or send anything in, how could you be a winner? If you did enter, check the phone number from which you received the call, particularly the area code. Visit http://www.bennetyee.org/ucsd-pages/area.html to get a listing of area codes. The most recent calls in southeastern Indiana originated from area code “876,” a Jamaican area code. If the area code is from outside the U.S., ISP says, BEWARE!
The actual Publisher’s Clearinghouse Sweepstakes winners are never contacted by phone and they do not have to pay any money up front to receive their cash prize. It is important to remember, if you fall for one of these scams and send money to some location within the U.S, it’s nearly impossible for U.S. law enforcement to recover the money and locate the scammers. If the money is sent outside the United States, there is absolutely nothing U.S. law enforcement can do to help you recover your loss.
Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it usually is.