Publisher’s Clearing House Will Not Call You – Avoid the Scam

FREMONT – A recurrent scam seems to be making the rounds again, and the Fremont Police Department wants to remind you: The Publisher’s Clearing House will not call you.

In this scam, a victim would recieve a phone call notifying them that they’re the winner of he PCH sweepstakes, and that they’ve won a large cash award or a new car. The victim is then instructed to send a sum of money to pay for “fees and taxes” for the delivery of that prize.

The Publisher’s Clearing House does not notify winners by phone and never collects money for fees associated with their prize giveaways. Additionally, PHC never collects taxes on their prizes, as that responsibility is between the winner and the IRS.

Residents who receive such a call are encouraged to hang up immediately, and if using a smart phone, block the number. Never provide an anonymous caller, or a caller who claims to be from a business you don’t already associate with, any of your your banking information, credit card numbers, social security number or drivers license numbers.

Okay to talk:

  • Your doctor’s office
  • Your insurance company or other providers calling from a verified number who give you their name and who you trust
  • A phone call you initiated (ie, you called the bank or your prescription provider)

Hang it up:

  • Anyone claiming to be law enforcement collecting bail for a grandchild or a fine which will keep you from being arrested
  • Anyone who asks you to pay a small fee to receive a large sum of money
  • Anyone who is pushy or threatening
  • Anyone who claims to be from the IRS
    • The IRS will never call a taxpayer to demand
      immediate payment, nor will the agency call about
      taxes owed without first having mailed a bill to the
      • The IRS will never demand that a taxpayer pay taxes
      without giving him or her the opportunity to question
      or appeal the amount claimed to be owed.
      • The IRS will never ask for a credit or debit card
      number over the phone.
      • The IRS will never threaten to send local police or
      other law enforcement to have a taxpayer arrested.
      • The IRS will never require a taxpayer to use a specific
      payment method to pay taxes, such as a prepaid debit
  • If it seems suspicious: ask for a website, supervisor, call back number or physical address where you can verify this information.
  • When in doubt – just hang up! Trust your gut.

You can get more information, including ways to keep yourself getting scammed, at this link from Leading Age.