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Putnam County Sheriff warns of utility phone scam

Reports of a phone call scam have been submitted to the Putnam County Sheriff's Department.  Sheriff Kevin McConville says the automated call is purportedly from New York State Gas and Electric or Central Hudson claiming power will be shut off in 30 minutes due to an unpaid balance.  The message directs intended victims to call a number to speak to a representative.  These calls are a scam. NYSEG and Central Hudson would never shut off power via an automated call, and state regulations prohibit such actions.  If there is to be a power shut off due to nonpayment, the utility will contact customers by mail and try to work out a payment schedule.  The power companies currently do not accept Venmo, Cashapp, or Zelle for payments. They will also never ask for payment via gift cards, nor will they ask for large sums of cash be be handed over  to a courier.  If someone shows up at the house and claims to be an NYSEG or Central Hudson employee, they should have their credentials displayed.  Residents should not speak with the unknown person until their identity is verified.