Be our guest: Publishers Clearinghouse scammers target retired Rapids woman
By Mike Leon
During the week of Thanksgiving, Wood County law enforcement advised the family of a Wisconsin Rapids woman to be vigilant against an ongoing scam in which a phone caller pretends to be associated with the Publishers Clearinghouse sweepstakes before asking for banking accounting information.
This attempted scam targeting a popular member of the Wood County community was stopped last week by an alert family member.
The Wood County Sheriff’s Department dispatch emphasized to the family that the department is aware of the scam, and advised anyone targeted to file a report with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
Law enforcement says citizens must always be vigilant, especially during the holidays.
The FTC maintains a public service announcement detailing the scam that has been perpetrated nationwide for years.
The FTC advises that if you think you’ve won a prize, here are a few things to know:
Never send money to collect a prize, sweepstakes check, or lottery winnings. If you have to pay, it’s a scam.
Never deposit a check and send back money, even if the funds appear in your account. That’s a sure sign of a scam.
If anyone calls asking you to pay for a prize, hang up and report it to the FTC at www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov.
The real Publishers Clearing House says it will never ask you to pay a fee to collect a prize. Check out Publishers Clearing House’s fraud protection page at https://info.pch.com/fraud-protection-2.
Community members are seething after the scam hit a retired woman who has given decades of service to the community.