The congratulations were enthusiastic in a letter sent to an 82-year-old Muskego resident, stating that she had won $2.6 million dollars in the Publisher's Clearing House sweepstakes.
Except it really wasn't Publisher's Clearing House, and not long after, the woman had an unauthorized charge on her credit card.
The woman's daughter contacted police earlier this month after she worried that her mother's identity had been stolen through the scam. The letter she received stated that she had won the $2.6 million, but "we highly recommend a 72-hour response" in order to collect. A phone number was given to contact them, 845-635-0864 within the 72 hours.
During the phone conversation, the male customer service rep asked for personal information, like the woman's social security number and credit card numbers. A "processing and insurance check" of $2500 was also requested to be sent to an address in Michigan.
While Muskego police were able to assist the woman to stop payment on the check, the credit information she gave out led to a $1600 charge made at a hotel in Canada.
While the investigation is ongoing, police are reminding residents that you should always be wary of contest 'prizes' that you didn't enter, and you should never have to pay fees first to collect prize awards, at least the legitimate ones.