download (1)The Erie County Sheriff & National Grid is warning its business customers against a new scam.

Fraudulent callers are contacting businesses threatening to shut off utilities due to missed payments. The targeted victims are instructed to call a 1-800 number to make payments through an automated system.

Since this closely mirrors National Grid’s system for addressing past due accounts, it may be tricky to tell the difference between a legitimate and fraudulent call. Some indications that the call is fraudulent are:

  • The caller is urgent and forceful
  • The caller does not know your account number
  • Pre-paid money cards or direct debit may be encouraged methods of payment
  • Checks or Credit Card are not accepted

If your business receives a call from National Grid to pay a late bill, play it safe. Do not provide any business or account information. Hang up and call National Grid at 1-800-642-4272 to verify the message.

If you believe you are a victim of this or any scam, you can contact the Erie County Sheriff at (716) 858-2903. You may also file a complaint with the FTC by using the FTC Complaint Assistant; choose “Scams and Rip-offs” and then “Impostor or Scams.”

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