Police, Liberty Utilities warn of payment scam in SalemBy CHRIS GAROFOLO
Union Leader Correspondent
November 16. 2017 8:28PM
SALEM — Energy company Liberty Utilities and the Salem Police Department report an uptick in an automated scam extorting customers into making a payment or risk losing services.
Officials in Salem are notifying residents about the automated call placed in the region saying if the customer does not make a payment within an hour, they will have their utilities shut off.
Liberty will send a written notice to any customer at risk of having a service shut off, not make an automated phone call, company officials said.
These incidents have been reported over the past week to 10 days.
The energy company said any customer receiving this suspicious call should hang up and immediately call Liberty Utilities at (800) 375-7413 for electric customers and (800) 833-4200 for gas customers.
Liberty representatives will confirm the status of any account.
SPD Capt. Joel Dolan said the department has been informed of at least one such call and advises residents not to give out any information over the phone.
“If you’re unsure of who is calling, certainly hang up, don’t give any personal information and contact the company directly,” Dolan said.
Liberty said voice-over-internet technology allows some fraudulent callers to change their call display information, making it seem like there is a local area code.
The company said to verify the identity of anyone who claims to be representing Liberty Utilities and immediately request a call-back number.