Publishers Clearing House, the sponsor of some of the most popular legitimate lotteries in the country will be announcing the winners of its latest contest in three days, which means that not only will the winners be notified by Publishers Clearing House, but scammers too will be falsely notifying their victims that they have won the Publishers Clearing House contest, however the scammers will tell their intended victims that they have to pay fees to claim their prizes.
It is hard to win any lottery. It is impossible to win one that you have not even entered and yet scam artists, the only criminals we refer to as artists have found that it is extremely lucrative to scam people by convincing them that they have won various lotteries. With so many people entered into the Publishers Clearing House lottery, it is easier for scammers to convince people that they have won.
Most lottery scams involve the victim being told that they need to pay taxes or administrative fees directly to the lottery sponsor; however no legitimate lottery requires you to do so. As with many effective scams, the pitch of the scammer seems legitimate. Income taxes are due on lottery winnings, but with legitimate lotteries they are either deducted from the lottery winnings before you receive your prize or you are responsible for paying the taxes directly to the IRS. No legitimate lottery collects taxes on behalf of the IRS from lottery winners. Other times, the scammer tell the “winners” that in order to collect their prizes, they need to pay administrative fees. Often, the victims are told to send the fees back to the scammer by prepaid gift cards or Green Dot MoneyPak cards. Prepaid cards are a favorite of scammers because they are the equivalent of sending cash. They are impossible to stop or trace. Again, no legitimate lottery requires you to pay administrative fees in order to claim your prize.
Fortunately, there is an easy way to know when you are contacted by Publishers Clearing House by phone, email or text message informing you that you have won one of its multi-million dollar prizes whether you have been contacted by the real Publishers Clearing House. Publishers Clearing House only contacts major prize winners in person or by certified or express mail. They do not contact winners by phone, email or text message so if you do receive a notification of your winning one of their multi-million dollar prizes in this fashion you know it is a scam. In addition, no winners of the Publishers Clearinghouse sweepstakes are ever required to make a payment of any kind to claim their prize. As for other lotteries, remember, you can’t win a lottery you haven’t entered and no legitimate lottery asks you to pay them administrative fees or taxes.