You Can Help Us Stop PCH Scams!

At Publishers Clearing House we take consumer protection and the fraudulent use of our good name in PCH scams very seriously. We’re working with authorities to stop these scams and doing everything we can to educate and protect fans like you!

Well, it turns out we’re not alone. Just a few days ago, we came across a blog post from Toni H., a blogger who was contacted by a PCH scammer. Titled “From Millionaire To Broke In 3 Hours With PCH Scam,” her blog post urges readers to beware of these scammers and come together to stop them.

I knew I had to find out more about Toni’s scam experience so I could share it with all of you. Below is my interview with her. Please note that all the graphics displayed were sent by the scammers, not the real PCH!

Amanda: Before writing your blog, had you ever entered our PCH Sweeps?
Toni:
I had not thought about Sweepstakes for some time. Not because I do not believe in the magic, I do. In the past, except maybe the last 10 years, I entered every chance I had.

Amanda: How were you contacted about the PCH scam?
Toni:
Through a series of emails. I thought this odd since I’d never before seen an email from Publishers Clearing House, but it felt credible. That’s a key thing I think, we do not as consumers realize how good these people attempting to scam us are in terms of masquerading themselves as legitimate.

Amanda: What did the e-mail say?
Toni:
They told me I had won. They asked for my name, age, gender and address, which also contained information of their supposed credible details and how I was chosen to win.

This is the first PCH scam email Toni received.

Amanda: Did they ask you to send money?
Toni:
They did ask for money, but not until they believed I was hooked. Once they had the information requested (name, age, etc…), I received the shocking amount needed to ship my check and the envelope. They even had the weight of each item (paper) and what the cost was for each. An itemized statement for what it would cost me to win!

This PCH scam asked Toni to send money to collect her winnings. Remember, at the real PCH, the winning is ALWAYS FREE!

Amanda: How did you know it was a scam?
Toni:
The request that I keep my winnings confidential. Why would PCH want me to stay quiet about winning? And another item that caught my suspicious eyes is that this is because of their “security protocol to avoid multiple claims”. Absolutely one of the biggest things that stood out was having to “Pay To Win”.

 Amanda: Is there anything else that might help others spot PCH scams?
Toni:
The lack of punctuation and the vernacular of the writer was off. The fact that there was a third-party involved from England, UK, and that it was a securities company also raised my eyebrows.

This PCH Scam used an address in the UK. Remember, PCH Headquarters are in Port Washington, New York!

Amanda: What final words of advice do you have for others?
Toni: It takes little out of us to pass forward details that you become aware of that might save one person some stress and heartache concerning scams in this world.

I couldn’t agree with you more, Toni! As for you blog readers, I hope you will be smart like Toni was and look out for warning signs like scammers asking for money. Remember, you NEVER need to pay a dime to claim a Publishers Clearing House prize! If you ever receive a suspicious letter, email or telephone call where someone is fraudulently claiming to be from PCH, please contact us. And if you want to help us spread the word about PCH scams and keep more people safe, please share this blog with your family and friends.

Amanda C., PCH Creative

Amanda C.
PCH Creative

P.S. ONLY 6 DAYS LEFT TO ENTER!


Note: Your email address will not be displayed

Showing 43 Comments
Melanie Antry said...

Thank you so much for sharing this to bloggers. This is a good information to have and the knowledge to gain. I too have been scammed a long time ago (but not with PCH…thank god). And luckaly my husband was able to show me all the red flags that anything with a 3rd party…it is always a scam when it comes to sending money out to gain money. So again thank you for sharing this with us.

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Stacey Kochinski said...

I pray so badly to be the FOREVER prize winner. I seriously pray. I dream about it. I hope. All I can do is think about how much of a blessing it would. How thankful and greatful I would be. So many things would be accomplished for all of my family and for me. PCH i enter every single day and I hope that its going to be my door step that you show up with the FOREVER prize. you will see why it would be such a blessing when you get here. I will keep my fingers crossed. and keep praying everyday. I love PCH

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Toni Helser said...

Thank you Amanda for the sharing of this valuable lesson for everyone.
It has been an absolute honor and pleasure to have worked with you for this post.

Believing something is “Too Good To Bbe True” is so easy. Yet in every example in my experience this turns out NOT to be the case.

Nothing would give me more delight than for scammers like this to be caught, arrested, and imprisoned. Well nothing except winning with PCH of course. Since I know you have to enter to win I’m entering today,I know who I am dealing with.

Thanks again Amanda & PCH! ~Toni H

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Kanika Loeung said...

Along with Melanie’s comment, I too was scammed. I didn’t know what toy do after that, but now I know what to look for so that I won’t be scammed again, Thank you!

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DeLayne Perry said...

Thanks Amanda!
Usually the email comes from one address and they want YOU to return your information to a different email address~
also note that they always say “USD”~A definite clue!

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Lauralee Hensley said...

I already received a second PCH scam letter this week. I let your fraud team know about the first, but today I received a second one. I was not scammed though because I know how your awards of winnings operates because you definitely keep your readers and patrons well informed. Thank you.

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    PCH Staff said...

    Thank you for bringing this to our attention. It sounds like you have been the victim of a scam. The offer you’re describing did not come from Publishers Clearing House. Also, there is never a catch with entering or winning any PCH Sweepstakes. PCH, like any legitimate Sweepstakes, will never ask you to pay any fee or make a purchase to claim a prize. You may forward the suspicious email to us at abuse@pch.com or report this occurrence to us using our toll-free number 1-800-392-4190. We also recommend that you report this incident to the National Fraud Center at http://www.fraud.org.

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      John plesnicar said...

      Yes you claim that what happened above is a scam but you do not mention your own scams. On a daily bases I receive 3 to 4 emails telling me if I do not respond to them then I will not be eligible for any winnings! Even after I have sent in numerous PCH mailers and all the bs emails. If I miss one of these email entries I will lose out on any monies won!! Now tell me who is being scammed by who? This is just a huge money making machine for PCH. Asking people who are retired on a fixed income to and you 27.95 for a DVD? 17.95 for dog toys? Trinkets that can be won at town fairs? Now tell me who is being scammed?

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        PCH Staff said...

        Hi John, first, thank you for your loyalty to PCH! PCH is NOT a scam. PCH, like any legitimate sweepstakes, will never ask you to pay any fee or make a purchase to claim a prize. Second, the email message that you received is referring only to the entry opportunity contained in that email. All of your other timely entries are valid and will remain valid even if you don’t respond to the email. This email is simply offering you another winning opportunity. Third, you NEVER have to buy something to enter one of our Sweepstakes. Buying something won’t impact your chances of winning either. Winners are selected randomly. All Giveaways are conducted by Giveaway Supervisors and overseen by independent auditors. We have no idea, in advance, who the winners might be. It’s just as much of a surprise for us as it is for you!

        - Jussie W. at PCH

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Gail Ellis-Duncan said...

Good Morning. Today is a new day to do good things and count our blessings.

Qustion, is it me or have other fellow PCH members had tech problems such as important emails from PCH not being able to continue at the entry level, or unable to sign in the PCH games? Do our entries get logged in if at the processing level it does not continue? Who do we contact to have this resolved?

Ya’ll Have Blessed Day
Gail Ellis-Duncan

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Ajay Keeramkary said...

Thank You for the advise and detailed information. All the points are so true to prove a scammer. Thanks again for the wonderful article PCH

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Esther said...

I have been contacted by phone ! the man said that i have won $ 5000 dollars and Publishing Clearing House need my Social Security Number ! i just toll him , PCH , never contac by phone !

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Jermane Stanton said...

BEWARE OF THE SCAMS!!!! YOU NEVER HAVE TO PAY TO RECEIVE MONEY FROM PCH. PLEASE READ

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Michaela G. said...

Thanks Amanda C., PCH Creative for this enlightening letter to all of us about SCAMS!!!

Well that was a very interesting story and I hope we can get the message out there for all to see and hear!!!

I just can not believe that there are people out there that do this, but it just goes to show that there are bad people every where, so very sad!!!! I really do hope we get these people that do this and stop it completely. What a nightmare!!!

Thanks again for sounding the bell on this problem, because I really love playing PCH and entering everyday in hopes that my number will be picked for the big MEGA PRIZE ($5,000.00 A WEEK FOREVER) this August 31, and you know it is really good that you put out those commercials and videos on line showing what happens to people that win, thanks!!!! We all need to see these videos on line or on TV, plus it just makes you feel good that this person WON the BIG SUPER PRIZE!!!!

I DO HOPE YOU AND THE OTHER PCH STAFF HAVE A FANTASTIC WEEK!!!!

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b schroeder said...

Oh wow these scammers are bad! I can’t type some of the words I have for these people! Good to know that the real PCH is diligent about staying on top of and stopping these crooks.

I got something in snail mail which was obviously some copycat scam type thing, though not on quite the same level. This “sweepstakes” had initials very close to PCH — the middle letter was something else. I can’t remember exactly how much they said I had won or might win (at least in the $thousands — yeah right!), but they wanted me to pay some $3 or $4 fee to enter or reserve my spot, or however they worded it. Betting that $3 or $4 would have just been the start of what they would have asked from me, with me getting absolutely zero in return! Sorry, I ripped the stupid thing up and threw it away on the spot. Next time I’ll try to save anything like that long enough to send PCH the details.

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kit basham said...

this is a scam and ask publisher clearing house to help this i had recieved 2 they have my ss #hat do you recomend this is a copy
Dear Beneficiary

Hide Details
FROM: Publishers Clearing House

Message flagged

Wednesday, September 19, 2012 4:31 AM

Publishers Clearing House Grant Award
382 Channel Drive, Port Washington,
New York 11050.

Order Winning Numbers : 7-1-4-8-7 -3
Email Ticket Number: FL 654/29/75

Dear Beneficiary,

The Publishers Clearing House in Colaboration with the
United States Government would like to notify you that you
have been chosen by the board of trustees as one of the
final recipients of a cash Grant/Donation for your own
personal,educational, and business development. We are
giving out a yearly donation of US$1,000,000.00 each to 105
lucky recipients.

These specific Donations/Grants will be awarded to 105
lucky international recipients worldwide, in different
categories. Based on the random selection exercise of multi-
channel direct marketing company and millions of
supermarket cash invoices here in the State, you were
selected amongst the lucky recipients to receive the award
sum of US$1,000,000.00 as Grant donations/aid.

To elaborate more, this draw was held in Port Washington,
New York 11050. where our head office is located. Please
note that these donations/Grants are strictly administered
by the AmericaGovernment, until you have been able to
collect your donation. According to the federal law
concerning the personal collection of PCH prize winnings,
your bonding fees, broker fees, and tarrif fees, have
already been deducted from your winnings, so you are not
require to pay any fee to claims your funds.

BENEFICIARY INFO..

FULL NAMES:
ADDRESS:
SEX:
DATE OF BIRTH:
MARITAL STATUS:
OCCUPATION:
SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER (SSN):
E-MAIL ADDRESS:
TELEPHONE NUMBER:
CITY:
STATE:
COUNTRY

Mr. Paul Anderson

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    PCH Staff said...

    Hi Kit – Thank you for bringing this to our attention. It sounds like you have been the victim of a scam. The offer you’re describing did not come from Publishers Clearing House. Also, there is never a catch with entering or winning any PCH Sweepstakes. PCH, like any legitimate Sweepstakes, will never ask you to pay any fee or make a purchase to claim a prize. You may forward the suspicious email to us at abuse@pch.com or report this occurrence to us using our toll-free number 1-800-392-4190. We also recommend that you report this incident to the National Fraud Center at http://www.fraud.org.

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Richard J Tardif said...

10/3/12 I gust got a call tonight saying tat my wife won a million dollars.He was very persistent. I hung up on him four times. Tole him it was a scam. Wanted $400.00 an change.He call one more time. our son took it. They were going to deliver it next day. T ought of having a undercover cop here to follow us to the bank with him to collect his share.will call in the morning.

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Pamela Blevins said...

I got a phone call saying I won 2.5 million dollars and an new car. He said his name was James Kennedy and his phone # is 876/356-7050.He said this will make a wonderful Christmas for you. He started asking questions like are you divorced and my age and I told him if this was legit he would have that information. He said I needed to pay $800 for shipping and handling. I started questioning him and he hung up. I do not know who to give this info to. Please help me stop this!

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    PCH Staff said...

    Thank you for bringing this to our attention. This is definitely a scam. The offer you’re describing did not come from Publishers Clearing House. PCH, like any legitimate Sweepstakes, will never ask you to pay any fee or make a purchase to claim a prize. You may report this occurrence to us using our toll-free number 1-800-392-4190. We also recommend that you report this incident to the National Fraud Center at http://www.fraud.org.

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sen luh said...

Hi all. My mother received a call from a man who called himself John Devine. Says he was calling onbehalf of pch and she won 17,000,000 dollars. In order to claim it she has to send 1700 to panama city to save the tax money. I know its a scam but it was hard to convince her. That concerns me that the elderly are that trusting. Hop this helps someone. Thanks

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tina foreman said...

thanks for all the info i looked online as my husband was caled that he won 500,000$ and didnt give them any infor or $. but wanted to get info from the guy adar peterson who said it wasn’t a scam and wanted at firsr for the green dot card from walmart 400$ then changed to 275$ and kept telling my husband its a scam. I called pch fraud dept and entered claim thank you for this blog.

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    PCH Staff said...

    Hi Tina. Thank you for bringing this to our attention. This is definitely a scam. The offer you’re describing did not come from Publishers Clearing House. PCH, like any legitimate Sweepstakes, will never ask you to pay any fee or make a purchase to claim a prize. You may report this occurrence to us using our toll-free number 1-800-392-4190. We also recommend that you report this incident to the National Fraud Center at http://www.fraud.org.

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jocelyn nesbitt said...

i cannot access pchgames i get a 400 bad request prompt

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    PCH Staff said...

    Hi Jocelyn, we’re so sorry about this! We would like to help you with this issue, but we will need more information. Please send us a message on our Ask Us page found here: http://pch.custhelp.com/app/ask so we can look into it for you! Please include the following information:
    - Date and time you received this message
    - Source of error (pch.com, pch.com email, etc.)
    - Device (Desktop computer, laptop, mobile device)
    - Web browser(s) you’re using (Firefox, Internet Explorer 8, 9, etc.)

    - Jussie W. at PCH

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Will Fix said...

I got a call today from (876) 356-7050
Jamaica, said I won 2.5 million, but need to send $485 LOL!

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    PCH Staff said...

    Hi Will, thank you for bringing this to our attention. This is definitely a scam. We’re so glad you saw right through it! The offer you’re describing did not come from Publishers Clearing House. PCH, like any legitimate Sweepstakes, will never ask you to pay any fee or make a purchase to claim a prize. You may report this occurrence to us using our toll-free number 1-800-392-4190. We also recommend that you report this incident to the National Fraud Center at http://www.fraud.org.

    - Jussie W. at PCH

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James Swift said...

I play PCH games all the time. I work nights now so I check my e-mails early in the am. This morning I noticed an unusual message from someone named Howard Zakee. It had an attachment in the form of a document that just didn’t feel right. I “googled” the name and got several references, none that involved PCH! Next I “googled’ the return Emial address where I was to send my Info, to collect my Million dollars and that search sent me here! That address is grant-pch@3mail.ie so be aware! I’m looking forward to winning on PCH… But I know they don’t need my information! They already have IT!!!

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Eve said...

What is wrong with some folks nowadays? I don’t get it am part of a young generation and afraid to grow up to live to see 19 years of age. Everything is about scam, hurting and lying? Am trying my best to get things the fun and correct way. Now some jerks have messed such a good sweepstakes up from criminal deeds. PCH just make me a winner to proof their are good people left on planet. Thanks…

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Jeff Ridge said...

25.000entry scam where’s my order at if it wasn’t a scam I’m turning it in to bbb and see what happens problably nothing a bunch ????

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Edwin Pina said...

Why is PCH selling/sending my emails to other companies, when I search on their Website?? The reason is that I have notice since using PCH I am getting three times as many emails from different companies as I search on PCH.

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lisa said...

I had a judging sheet mailed too me saying that I won and if I send them $12.99 then they will send me a certified check of $1.980.000.00. I don’t know if its threw pch or who.

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Saraya Penn said...

I received two e-mails from Stephen Clarence. He stated that, “On behalf of PCH we would like to congratulate you for being a winner in the promotion and have therefor been approved to claim a total sum of $945,368.12 USD which has been processed and certified by the New York States gambling Commission. In line with the directive by the board, below are the required fees for registration and insurance before delivery of your winning parcel which its contents will be informed to you upon delivery.” Then they had two charts with fee’s needed depending on how quickly I’d like to receive my parcel. Premium Class Delivery: 4-5 Working Days: Mailing- $52.00, Insurance- $360.00, Vat(%)- $56.60 = $468.60. First Class Delivery: In 24 Hours: Mailing- $52.00, Insurance- $560.00, Vat(%)- $112.60 = $724.60. This is bizarre and is the best scam I have seen yet in all my experience with emails. I wish I could upload the document of fee’s attached to the bogus e-mail. The logo, color, emails, and address are what made this seem legitimate. If I had the funds, I might have fallen for it. That’s how great the logo and quality of the email. I was soooo excited until my boss pointed out, “You don’t pay fee’s before you get your winnings. It might get taxed before they give you the real check, but they would deliver it to you with the prize patrol then discuss all of that. It doesn’t seem right. Logo or no Logo.”

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Saraya Penn said...

I wrote a long detailed comment with my experience with my e-mail scam. When I tried to post it, it said I’ve already said that. What??!!! This was my first time posting anything let alone the post about my fraudulent winnings. Long story short: Stephen Clarence Apparently I won $945,368.12 if I sent one of two Fee’s first: $468.60 for regular shipping, and $724.60 for first class 24 hour shipping. Logo, address, and E-mail quality is what makes it so believable.

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kristin childress said...

Was contacted through Facebook saying I was a winner the guy had a PC Facebook page but the name of Todd Sloane not col

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micaela spitzer said...

add your comment here

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micaela spitzer said...

I received a second scam within 2 weeks. Recognized the voice
but came from a different telephone # 1 876 854 7393. FYI!!!

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Ginger Lee Rogers said...

I looks like scammers like to take Tokens!!

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Ramona Hamling said...

Received a phone call today from a James Kennedy – I had won 2.5 million for pch. He wanted me to western union him 375.00. His phone number is 1-876-853-0286. I was lucky and smart enough to know you never have to pay to win. Hope these guys get stopped before someone does send them money.

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