• BBB warns Mid-South residents of Publishers Clearing House sweepstakes scam

    By: Greg Coy

    Updated:

    Some scammers are trying to take advantage of the Publishers Clearing House sweepstakes.  

    They claim to be part of the prize patrol and lie to victims that they are connected to the Better Business Bureau.  

    Fred Jones told FOX13 over the phone that he had been told he had won $2.5 million in the sweepstakes.  Jones said he got a call from someone claiming to be with the Publishers Clearing House.  

    The caller said he won the sweepstakes and Jones "had never won anything” in his life.


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    Jones told FOX13 the caller wanted him to give him $1,000 in cash to pay the driver. Jones suspected fraud.

    "Sir, I would like to write you a check for that amount of money if you hand me one for $2.5 million," he told the caller.

    Jones hung up but called back and was transferred to another man who took the scam to another level. This caller said he was with the Better Business Bureau.  

    So, Jones called the Better Business Bureau of the Mid-South.  

    "They said no we don't call people like that it is a scam. I said I know it is a scam that is the reason I am called you," said Jones. 

    FOX13 reached out to Randy Hutchinson of the Better Business Bureau of the Mid-South.  

    "The vast majority of people know better and don't fall for it, but they just need one of out of a thousand to fall and make it profitable," said Hutchinson. 

    FOX13 called both numbers left by the people claiming to be associated with the company. We left a message on one of the numbers that has an address in Jamaica.  

    "If you are asked to pay money up front for any reason, it is more than likely a scam," said Hutchinson.

    FOX13 went to the Publishers Clearing House website. It specifically warns customers not to send money, pre-paid gift cards, cash, check or any portion of the winnings back.  

    "Calm down, don't get excited that you are going to get a million dollars. Talk to friends, talk to your bank, let someone counsel you that you are about to get scammed," said Hutchinson.

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