Tip of the Week - February 16, 2016 - Beware of Utility Impersonation Scams

Scammers impersonating utility companies or your local government love to play dress-up.  They'll show up at your door looking very official,  offering to provide a free energy audit to identify ways in which you can cut down on your utility bills.  Don't let them in.  Only allow utility workers whom you have called ahead of time into your house, and even then ask for identification.  Still feel uncomfortable?  Call the utility company to verify.  Utility company impersonators try to trick homeowners into purchasing products with marked-up prices and often ask for immediate payment or personal information.  Don't cave into their pressure.  Tell them to leave your porch and immediately closeand lock your door.

"This scheme never gets old for scam artists," said CSLEA Foundation Chairman Kenny Ehrman.  "Seniors are so trusting and are often looking for ways to save, given their fixed incomes, so they are a huge target for con artists looking to make a quick buck.  I always tell seniors, don't feel rude by hanging up the phone or closing the door on someone who's offering a service you didn't first inquire about.  Solicitors and seniors, it is not a good equation."