Utica Police say they've received several calls regarding scammers who say they're with National Grid and threaten to turn off your power unless you pay up.
Police say complicating matters is that the scammers are able to disguise their actual phone number and calling location, so many of these fraudulent phone calls will appear with a 315 area code on your called ID.
Here's how it works, according to cops: The scammer falsely identifies his/her self as a representative of National Grid and tells the unsuspecting victim that the power to their home will be turned off in the next 30-45 minutes unless they receive an immediate payment. Then, attempts are made to secure bank or credit card account numbers.
Utica Police say National Grid is aware of this and advises you take these steps to protect yourself:
- Step 1: Protect yourself. Do not provide any personal information or make immediate payment to someone you can’t identify.
- Step 2: Ask the caller to provide the last five digits of your National Grid account number. If they can’t, hang up.
- Step 3: Report the suspicious call to National Grid by calling Customer Service and confirm the status of your account.
It's also important to remember that the scammers don't have any ability to control the power supply to your home or business. So, whether you pay up or not, they can't turn-off or turn-on you power.
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