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Metro Creative Connection

National Grid alerts customers to holiday scams

Submitted

Tue, Dec 22nd 2020 12:25 pm

Company offers tips to protect customers from imposters

Submitted by National Grid

With the holidays in full swing and the COVID-19 pandemic causing financial stress on many individuals, National Grid is alerting customers about recent reports of scams where imposters are promising refunds or discounts. Here’s how scammers are trying to prey on customers:

√ Customers may notice their caller ID displays an incoming call is from a phone number in a nearby town or even the neighborhood where they live.

√ When customers answer the phone, a recorded message explains that, due to being overbilled, they are owed refunds or discounts on their utility bills.

√ The customer is instructed to press “1” to learn more about the refund or discount.

√ The customer is transferred to someone who explains the customer is eligible for a refund or discount.

√ The customer is then asked for personal information, which may include their utility bill account number.

√ The scammer also may ask for the customer’s bank account number or other personal or financial information. Divulging this level of information can lead to identity theft or customers having their bank accounts accessed.

Scammers have become increasingly sophisticated in replicating National Grid’s recorded messaging and directions for phone prompts, making it more difficult to differentiate an actual National Grid phone call from an imposter’s call. Similar scams have been reported across the U.S. by other utilities.

Customers who have fallen victim to the scam should immediately contact National Grid by using the toll-free telephone numbers listed on their billing statements.

The company wants to protect customers and offers the following warning signs to detect this recent scam:

√ Do not cave to pressure. Never – under any circumstances – offer personal or financial information to someone who you cannot identify.

√ Scammers will not have access to your account information, and you should never provide that information if you are asked.

√ National Grid representatives who call you will know your account number.

√ 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 does not know your account number, hang up the phone.

To learn more about protecting yourself and your family from scams, visit www.ngrid.com/scam.

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