The San Luis Obispo Police Department has reported an increased number of fraud reports related to utility company scams.
Over the past several weeks, victims have reported receiving phone calls from scammers posing as representatives of a utility company. The scammer tells the victim their account is delinquent and then request an immediate payment through the form of credit card style gift cards. The scammer tells the victim that if a payment is not made they will have their utilities shut off.
Several of these scams have reportedly taken place on holidays when the utility companies would normally be closed.
SLO police would like to remind residents of the following tips:
Utility companies will never ask customers to use a gift card to make a payment. Suspects engaged in fraudulent activity d! o this to avoid being identified and tracked by investigators. Utility company’s routinely send out delinquent notices in the mail. If you believe your account is in good standing and have not received a delinquent notice you should suspect the validity of the caller asking for payment. If you do receive a call asking for payment and suspect it to be fraudulent, end the call and research how to contact the company on your own. Calling a verified telephone number for your utility company to speak to a representative can quickly determine if your account is in good standing or not.
Any with information about these scams is asked to contact the San Luis Obispo Police Department at (805) 781-7312 or Crime Stoppers at (805) 549-STOP.