What Are Publishers Clearing House Scams?
Publishers Clearing House is a legitimate marketing company that markets merchandise and magazine subscriptions with sweepstakes and prize-based games. The publishing company is a legitimate company that gives out cash prizes to winners yearly.
Scammers often discover a potential target by finding information on the dark web. There might be a piece or two of information that scammers need to gain access to your financial accounts or identity.
So, they use Publishers Clearing House images and messaging to extract that information from the potential victim. However, many scammers give out fake winners and require people to give out their personal information or pay a certain amount in gift cards.
Example of Publishers Clearing House Scam:
In 2022, a Pennsylvania man received a check for $12.5 million supposedly from PCH where to claim his prize, he needed to send $31,000 in prepaid gift cards. After sending $500, he realized he had been scammed.
In this case, the scammer tricked the man into sending money out of the guise that he would win money instead. He claimed the check looked very legitimate. Many people receive fake checks in an attempt to give out their confidential information. Also, hackers use Publishers Clearing House messaging to gain more information on a potential victim.
How to Identify a Publisher Clearing House Scam?
PCH does not announce sweepstakes or prize winners over the phone, text, or email; they reveal their winners in person, often outside their house. Scammers typically send false checks in a letter with no return address.
Legitimate PCH Winners never have to pay to receive their prize. PCH does not want to accept your money; they distribute prizes to winners. It is a scam if someone impersonating PCH finds you and asks for money.
Confidential Information never needs to be provided when you enter the PCH sweepstakes. Generally, whenever people randomly ask you for personally identifiable information, you should be wary, especially in this case.
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