Chambersburg Police: Don’t be a scam victim

Don’t be a scam victim, Chambersburg police are warning.

Local residents received repeated calls recently telling them they won prizes in the Publishers Clearing House sweepstakes. They are then asked for money or gift cards to pay for “processing” fees.

PCH itself issues bulletins advising the public that their sweepstakes (and winning entries) are always free.

“A legitimate sweepstakes will NEVER ask you to send money to enter a sweepstakes, claim a prize, or to pay a fee, tax or deposit,” PCH says on its website.

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A scammer advised a Chambersburg resident recently that he had won $2.5 million. The scammer told the man he needed to pay processing fees on the prize before the money could be released. The scammer asked the resident to send Visa Gift cards for payment. 

The resident didn’t bite, but continued to receive calls.  These additional calls seemed more legitimate.

The potential victim was sent to a local office supply store by the scammer to pick up his “winning documents” could be picked up.

He checked with the store, and sure enough, there was a “winning” document there with his name on it. The document detailed that he had won and how to claim the money. 

Of course, the scammer continued to request money for insurance fees and processing fees via gift cards.

An alert store employee advised this resident that it was a scam. 

These same scammers also told the man that he also won a $157,000 car and continued to request money. 

READ: Beware COVID-19 scams lurking

Be alert to scammers tricks

People need to be alert for these type of scams. They should never give out personal information or banking information over the phone. Scammers often spoof their numbers to make them appear more legitimate.   

“If it sounds too good to be true, it’s most likely is a scam,” police advised in a post on the Chambersburg Police Department CRIMEWATCH® website.

A tell tale sign that someone is trying to scam you is by asking you to purchase gift cards and provide the numbers from the gift cards for payment of fees, vehicles, insurances, processing fees, etc.

In many of these cases, it’s nearly impossible to retrieve the money. 

“Once the gift card numbers have been given (to the scammer), they are emptied very quickly,” police said. “Please safeguard your money! Don’t be a victim.”

Sourced via website.CRIMEWATCH®