BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — National Grid has issued a warning of potential scams targeting customers.
The company said people claiming to be from National Grid may contact you via telephone and email, and in some cases automated recordings, and say you have past due
balances and even promise a savings on your next bill. The scammers may also threaten to shut service off unless you purchase a prepaid debit card in a specific amount and ask for a Social Security number and a National Grid account number.
National Grid said the calls are not officially from National Grid. Although the company does contact customers with past due balances by phone to offer payment options, it will never demand direct payment through prepaid debit cards.
If you believe you may have fallen victim to a scam you should contact your local law enforcement.
National Grid has provided the following tips:
- Be vigilant. If you believe you are current on your National Grid account, it is highly likely a call seeking payment is a scam.
- Protect yourself. Verify you are speaking with a National Grid representative. Ask the caller to provide the last five digits of your National Grid account number. If the caller doesn’t know your account number and phishes for help, take charge and hang up immediately.
- Do not take the bait. Scammers will not have access to your account information, social security number or other personal details and you should never offer that information if asked. National Grid representatives will know your account number.
- Scammers also may contact you by email and attempt to lure customers into clicking on a link, visiting a malicious website, revealing account information, or calling a phone number.
- While National Grid may ask for a payment to be made over the phone, the payment method will be left to the customer’s discretion.
- Do not fall for scare tactics and threats. National Grid will not contact customers demanding immediate payment by wire transfer, Green Dot Money-Pak or any other prepaid card service.
- Do not cave to pressure. Never -- under any circumstances -- offer personal or financial information to someone who you cannot identify.
- Every National Grid employee carries a photo ID card, and contractors working for the company are also required to carry ID. If someone requesting entry into your home or business does not show an ID card, don’t let that person in, and call National Grid or local law enforcement.