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The Publishers Clearing House Scam appears to have resurfaced.  ETC recently received a phone call from a customer who stated she received a phone call from Publishers Clearing House.  She was told that she had won a gift certificate in the amount of $899.00 and that she needed to go to K-Mart.  She was then told they would call her back and would send her the gift certificate.  She stated to ETC that she knows this was a scam.

According Elaina R.’s blog, Publishers Clearing House Online Creative, it does appear this customer experienced a call that was a scam.  To read Elaina’s blog for yourself please go to http://blog.pch.com/blog/2013/04/05/5-ways-to-know-if-its-a-publishers-clearing-house-scam/.  To briefly recap Elaina’s blog, Publishers Clearing House is the real deal, a legitimate sweepstakes company that does award millions in cash and prizes.  Unfortunately though, criminals try to cash in on their good name and trick unsuspecting people.  According to Elaina, here are 5 foolproof ways to know if the offer is from a Scam Artist.

It is scam if any one of the following occurs:

1.    You’re asked or required wire or pay any amount of money in order to claim a prize
2.    You’re asked to load up a Green Dot MoneyPak or other money transfer card in exchange for the prize
3.    If someone tries to contact you in advance regarding the prize delivery
4.    If you receive a call from someone claiming to be from Publishers Clearing House and says you have won
5.    If someone claims to be from Publishers Clearing House and tries to send you a request on Facebook

According to Elaina’s blog, Publishers Clearing House does not have any fees associated with the winnings, they will never ask you to pay a cent to collect a prize, they send a Big Prize Patrol in person with a big check to your front door to capture your surprise, they do not call you to update any personal information and they do not private message anyone on Facebook.

This PCH Scam first appeared on the ETC website a year or two ago.