IFPD Warning Residents about Utility Scams

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Updated: 12/10/2013 12:07 pm
Officers in Idaho Falls are asking residents to be extra vigilant in protecting themselves from potential scams.

Police say they’ve had several reports of potential scammers posing as utility representatives and calling customers and threatening to shut off their service if they do not immediately pay a bill with a credit card.

Officers would like to remind residents that no one from Idaho Falls Power or the City Utilities office will ever call and demand immediate payment for an overdue bill and your power cannot be shut off on such short notice. City workers responsible for collecting on overdue accounts do make house calls but always carry identification and wear uniforms identifying them as city employees. Employees will not ask for account information and will provide a receipt upon payment.

For more information on how you can avoid scams you can see the list provided by IFPD below.

Tips for avoiding scams:

Ask for verification: IFP and Utilities employees rarely call residential customers. If they do, however, they will know the customer’s name and address, account number and account balance. If you suspect a scammer is on the other end of the line, hang up and call the Utilities office at 612-8280.

Keep your information safe: Do not provide account information to any caller. No one from Idaho Falls Power or the city Utilities office will ever ask for account information.

You always have options: A number of payment options are available to customers and the Utilities office can usually work out a payment arrangement for customers who have fallen behind on their bill.

Please report scam calls: If you receive a suspicious call, write down the phone number if you have Caller ID, hang up and call the police.

If someone comes to your door:

Did you have an appointment? IFP employees who conduct energy audits or other projects that require home visits always make appointments. Collections agents with the Utilities office often don’t have an appointment, but they drive city vehicles, wear marked clothing, carry ID and all pertinent account information, and will provide a receipt for any payment made. Meter readers will never collect payment.

Check the vehicle: IFP and city Utilities employees drive white or yellow vehicles bearing the IFP logo or city logo.

Ask to see ID: Our employees always carry ID cards.

Verify: To confirm the person at your door is an IFP or Utilities employee, ask them to wait outside and call either IFP at 612-8526 or the Utilities office at 612-8280.

Please report scam artists: If you believe a visitor or caller is a scam artist posing as a utility employee, or that you have been the victim of a scam, call IFPD at 529-1200.

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