The Turlock Irrigation District is warning consumers that scammers are attempting to collect money or access people’s personal information by posing as TID representatives.
The scammers are emailing TID customers and telling them their electricity would be turned off imminently if a payment was not given immediately.
The callers will often insist that the person purchase a pre-paid money card and call them back with it as payment of the bogus past-due balance.
TID said their preferred method of handling a past due account is in one of their offices and that TID never demands that the payment be made over the phone with a pre-paid card.
TID's credit/collections department may call a customer regarding financial obligations related to an overdue account, and during the course of those calls they can arrange for payments over the phone. TID makes a number of attempts to notify a customer of the status of such an account and when this call happens it should not be a surprise.
In their fraud alert TID stated, “As a general rule, customers should always be skeptical of pushy people who demand payment or personal information (like your Social Security Number or bank routing number), especially if these people threaten to turn off your power. Electrical disconnections are a last resort for TID. Customers subject to disconnect are notified by mail of their delinquent status prior to their service being disconnected.
If you receive a call and want to ensure that you are actually speaking with TID, hang up and call our Customer Service Department at 209-883-8222.”
TID’s numbers all begin with 883, but scammers can use spoofing services to make the call appear as if it is coming from TID.
For those questioning if an individual in the field is a legitimate TID employee, TID issued these guidelines:TID employees drive white vehicles with blue TID logos visible on the door panels. The vehicles will have State of California Exempt license plates.Service workers wear blue shirts with TID logos embroidered on the front and/or back. All TID employees also have company-issued identification badges.Customer Service Representatives at (209) 883-8222 will know if a TID employee is supposed to be at a particular service address.TID does not work with any third-party vendors for payment collection, nor does TID contract with any agency or service conducting door-to-door rebates or promotions.TID employees in the field have official paperwork indicating the service address at which they are supposed to be, the name of the account holder, and the proper account number.