Don't fall victim to sweepstakes scams

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PHOENIX -- 3 On Your Side has a warning.

Many of you have probably received a letter in the mail or maybe an e-mail saying, "You've won big money and you need to claim it."

This seems like a no-brainer, but people out there are falling for it and we've been receiving tons of e-mails about it.

I mean, during these tough times, we all need a little more jingle in our pocket, but the conmen out there know that and so do companies that try to convince you that you could win a lot of money if you just try their product.

Tiffany Davidson says she should be a millionaire because with all the fliers she keeps getting, she has a lot money.

"It started happening every day and I've been getting three or four a day," Davidson said.

And they all said the same thing -- Davidson had won big bucks but in order to get all that money, there was a catch.

"If I send them a check or a money order or cash, then they'll send me the sweepstakes winnings," she said.

Yeah, no problem. Davidson just has to send in money for a processing fee.

Not much mind you, only around $20 for each so-called winnings, but Davidson says being a single mom, every penny counts and why should she have to pay to get her big winnings?

That's a good point!

"Obviously, if they have a million dollars to give me, then they have $20 for a processing fee," she said.

And although Davidson says she knew it was too good to be true, it was a definite temptation, especially when every single time she walked to her mailbox she had a new notice.

"I can see where it would be easy for someone to fall victim to it," she said.

Here's another common scam. You get a check in the mail, it looks real and all you have to do is deposit it into your account and mail back a portion to the "administrative offices."

Don't do it because by the time your bank figures out the check is fake, you've already mailed out the money to a bad guy.