Sample Sweepstakes Scam Email:
Readers Digest Publishers Clearinghouse Sweepstakes
A visitor writes in to report an email purporting to be from the "Readers Digest Publishers Clearinghouse Sweepstakes".
There is a Reader's Digest and there is a Publisher's Clearinghouse, and both
operate sweepstakes but there is no Readers Digest Publishers Clearinghouse Sweepstakes.
This is a scam, unrelated to the legitimate organizations of those names.
Note the usual clues to an obvious fraud that we
have highlighted in the
letter; keep confidential, selected by a random computer lottery of email
addresses, no website of their own, use of free hotmail/yahoo email accounts,
numerous misspellings, poor grammar and punctuation, etc.
Also see these pages:
For scam company names that start with other letters,
click on the letter:
Email from a potential victim:
I received a notice in the mail saying that I have won a drawing from Readers
Digest Publishers Clearing House sweepstakes. They sent a check that looks
pretty real, but I don't want to be defrauded. The name of the company is
CENTER LOTTO COMMISSION INC
1752 KONGENS GADE ST.
THOMAS, VIRGIN ISLANDS
It also gives a phone number 1-902-412-9242 for a
"Jack Dempsey" in
the North America Claim Dept.
Common signs that it is a scam:
the return email addresses are free Yahoo email accounts,
The recipient "won" without buying a ticket (so where does the
money come from?)
"For security reasons" you're not allowed to talk to anyone
about it (especially the police or consumerfraudreporting.org!) - which ought to
be odd since lotteries thrive on publicity!
Names of Scam / Fake / Fraud Lottery
Click here for the huge list of the names of the currently identified lottery