Regional Radio News has learned of scam letters arriving in Taylorville and Christian County claiming that you are a grand prize winner in the Publishers Clearinghouse Sweepstakes. Enclosed inside is a check and a letter stating how you can claim your big prize. Just one big problem with that, the letter is fake, and if you try to cash the check, it could leave you facing a felony. The letter has a phone number to call and when you call the number, it tells you to keep quiet and not tell anyone, and to cash the check which they say is usually the balance of attorney fees and insurance. When you cash the check, you have to pay back the bank for the amount of money that the check was made out for plus because you "stole" money of over $5,000 dollars from the bank, they could pursue legal action as well. Plus the phone number that you call will also give your phone number to other scammers, because they think they have you than if you've called the number. Christian County Sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp is glad that this was turned in and that the gentleman didn't fall for this scam. But others haven't been so lucky.
If you believe you are the victim of a “Fake Check Scam” using the Publishers Clearing House name or logo, please contact PCH immediately by calling the toll-free number at 1-800-392-4190. Consumers can also check out the Scam Prevention page on PCH.com for detailed information on what to do if you believe you have been contacted by a scammer. Publishers Clearing house says it will never call or email in advance to say you are going to be a winner. They will never tell you to be home at a certain time. PCH will never ask you to pay anything in advance to collect your pirze and they will never send an advance check to cover taxes or fees. If you believe you have been taken advantage of you may also contact the Christian County Sheriff's office.