Beware of Publisher's Clearinghouse scam

Dec 30, 2013

The Haywood County Sheriff's Office is warning the public of a scam that is occurring locally.

The scenario goes something like this: Victims are called and told they won money, a new car or another prize through Publisher's Clearinghouse or similar sweepstakes. The victims are instructed to send either cash or pre-paid debit cards from CVS or WalMart to a specific address, often an address in New York.

Victims are informed that once payments are received, their winnings will be forwarded to them immediately.

The caller identifies himself and tells the person he will follow up with a call to the IRS to validate the claim as far as taxes and "state to state" transfer of monies is concerned. The caller will ask for the card numbers of pre-paid debit cards once they've been purchased. The caller then takes the number, makes an identical card and gains immediate access to the money with no hope of restitution to the victim.

The promised prizes are never delivered. Investigations show the calls and frauds are originating in other countries. The sheriff says anyone who receives such calls should not engage the caller in any way.

Comments (1)
Posted by: Joseph Edwards | Dec 31, 2013 10:52

Yep  this scam is nation wide.  We were being harassed for over a year and a half from calls originating out of Kingston Jamaica.  The caller was identified as J.M. Kingston.  Promises of wealth and gifts are their hook.  We never fell into the trap but once gotten your phone number they will be persistent.  I even had many calls originating from several states all connected to Jamaica in some form.  Eventually I was flat out told that if I wish to no longer receive these calls I would have to pay $150.00 using a credit card over the phone.  Fortunately for us they made a mistake and somehow I was able to obtain a return phone number and he received calls from me every 15 minutes for over ten hours.  We no longer got these calls.  We also had assistance from a Commerce Dept. out of Washington D.C.

So please be alert and just hang up. Remember the old adage "If it sounds too good to be usually is not true".


Mike Edwards


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