GREENSBORO, North Carolina — If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Or is it?

You've seen the commercials.

A stranger knocks on a door with balloons and a big check. But a WFMY News 2 viewer wanted to know whether Publisher's Clearinghouse is legit.

"Do people win the prizes that they claim to give out, or is it just a hoax. I've seen them advertised all the time for many years and am just wondering if it's real or not, Larry King asked.

To verify, we are checking in first with the Better Business Bureau.

Publishers Clearing House is registered with them and has a good rating. That's always a good sign.

Next we are checking with Publishers Clearing House directly.

If you go to their website, they actually have a list of all the recent big winners, how much they won, and where they live. 

The list included McKinley Harris from Winston-Salem. He won $10,000 from the prize patrol last summer.

RELATED: Publishers Clearing House Prize Patrol Surprises Military Veteran in Winston-Salem

The odds aren't great, but yes it's verified people really do win, but you have to be careful.

Scammers love to pretend they are with Publishers Clearing House.

They may call you to say that you've won you, but you must just them money first before they can hand out the prize.

It happened to woman from whitsett.

"He told me I needed to pay fee upfront for the IRS," Hilda Stead said.

RELATED: Triad Woman Loses Majority Of Life Savings In Publisher's Clearing House Scam

She ended up losing thousands instead of winning.

If you enter a giveaway, here are a few things to keep in mind.

  1. You don't have to buy anything to enter.
  2. You never have to pay to receive your prize.
  3. Publishers Clearing House will mail smaller prizes to winners. If it's over $10,000, they'll surprise you at your door.