Central Hudson warned local customers this week about a bill payment scam taking place locally and in other parts of the country.
The company said customers have been contacted by telephone by individuals claiming to represent Central Hudson. The caller demands immediate payment to prevent services from being disconnected, then asks the customer to pay using a prepaid card purchased at a pharmacy or convenience store.
Central Hudson said it would never request payment in this fashion and urged customers to call it directly at (845) 452-2700 if they receive such a call.
Other reported scams include emails from impersonators posing as a utility company requesting utility bill payment and personal information and thieves posing as utility employees attempting to collect payments for utility bills in person. “The impersonators may request immediate payment in cash, check or by credit card,” said Charles A. Freni, senior vice president of customer services and transmission & distribution operations for Central Hudson, adding that legitimate employees and authorized contractors drive marked vehicles and carry photo identification, and will always display it upon request.
Customers receiving personal visits, calls or emails are warned not to provide or verify their utility account or other personal information such as credit card, social security or bank routing numbers. “If there is any doubt, customers may wish to note the caller ID information, license plate or email address and report the incident to their local police department,” said Freni.