The Publishers Clearing House has a reputation for showing up on the doorstep and handing out big checks. When it happens, the winner's faces tell it all.
The "phishing" scam that follows close behind comes in a phone call or a lookalike letter, claiming a big check awaits the recipient. When it's accepted, the loser's face tells it all.
Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes envelopes began hitting mailboxes across the Snake River Region this week, which means the scam calls and mail is soon to follow.
The scam goes as follows: a caller tells the person answering the phone he confirming the award winner for Publisher's Clearing House and that they have won a prize from the sweepstakes. There is a fee involved from the consumer to receive the money they have allegedly won.
Better Business Bureau CEO Dale Dixon says Federal law prohibits money to be paid in order to win a prize. Publishers Clearing House awards its prizes by a personal visit to the winners.
"If you should receive any phone calls or emails from Publisher's Clearing House indicating you have won a prize, but need to send money, don't! Contact Publisher's Clearing House directly for information at 1-800-459-4724, Monday - Friday 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. EST or visit their website at http://www.pch.com/
Never pay a fee, no matter how small, for winning a contest, sweepstakes or lottery, Dixon says. International lotteries are illegal in the United States.