Phone scams are becoming more frequent every day. Toronto Hydro customers have been warned by the provider about phone scams threatening to shut off their power if they don't pay up.
As phone call scams have become almost a norm now, Toronto Hydro is warning their customers of the fraud and letting them know what to look out for to make sure they don't end up putting money in the hands of the scammers.
According to a tweet issued by Toronto Hydro, scammers are allegedly contacting their customers, threatening to disconnect their power, and demanding payment.
"Over the last couple of months, we have been reminding Toronto hydro customer to be aware of sophisticated scams that are targetting both businesses and residential customers," a spokesperson for Toronto Hydro told Narcity.
The company reminded customers that they never threaten to immediately disconnect, use a 1-800 number, or accept bitcoin as payment.
According to CityNews Toronto, just this month Toronto Hydro spoke out against holiday scams as some customers had door-to-door representatives posing as Toronto Hydro employees.
If you receive a call from someone you suspect to be a scammer, an Ontario ice storm is more likely to cause you to lose power than a supposed "nonpayment" issue.
Toronto Hydro will never make threats like this. Still, you should probably keep up with your (real) bills to be safe.
"We will never disconnect power without first contacting customers through multiple channels," said the spokesperson.
Scammers are contacting our customers, threatening immediate disconnection & demanding payment. Remember, we neve… https://t.co/MIPHJMmFmQ— Toronto Hydro (@Toronto Hydro)1577737020.0
Increases in scamming phone calls occur mostly during the important times of the year such as the holiday season and long weekends.
"We definitely see a rise leading into the holiday season and we also, historically see a rise leading into a long weekend," the spokesperson told Narcity.
Toronto Hydro has also listed ways to protect yourself against scams and fraud, on their website.
The holidays are primetime for fraudsters looking to scam our customers, especially leading into weekends. We’re wo… https://t.co/Ipv5dmx8NR— Toronto Hydro (@Toronto Hydro)1576167174.0
Just last month, 32 phone scammers were arrested for extortion in Dehli, India, targetting Canadian citizens.
Companies like the Candian Revenue Agency have had their fair share of impersonators, however, in September 2020, Canadian phone companies will be blocking all scam calls with new software.
If you're still unsure as to whether or not the call is legitimate, you can call Toronto Hydro at 416-542-8000 to speak to a real representative.
You can also report fraud to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501.