Residents cautioned not to get scammed

SANTA ROSA — Don’t get tricked out of your money.

Yesterday, the city issued an alert advising customers of its water system to ignore requests for payment made over the telephone.

The city administrator said the city of Santa Rosa does not call water customers to request payment over the telephone.

The city issues its water bills by U.S. mail.

Numerous reports have been received by the city of telephone calls made to Santa Rosa water customers supposedly from the “City of Santa Rosa, California,” stating the customer’s water service will be disconnected if payment is not made via debit card.

According to a press release, these calls do not originate with either city.

City leaders said it’s a scam.

Residents should not provide any personal or financial information to these callers.

The city of Santa Rosa is investigating the incidents and has requested assistance from outside agencies.

Anyone who receives a call requesting payment over the phone for their water bill is encouraged to record the details of the call, and provide the information to the Santa Rosa Police Department at 636-1050.

Remember these tips to avoid being a victim of a telephone scam:

• Register your phone number with the National Do Not Call Registry. You may register online or by calling 1-888-382-1222.

• Be wary of callers claiming that you’ve won a prize or vacation package.

• Hang up on suspicious phone calls.

• Be cautious of caller ID. Scammers can change the phone number that shows up on your caller ID screen. This is called “spoofing.”

• Research business opportunities, charities, or travel packages separately from the information the caller has provided.

Don’t

• Don’t give in to pressure to take immediate action.

• Don’t say anything if a caller starts the call asking, “Can you hear me?” This is a common tactic for scammers to record you saying “yes.” Scammers record your “yes” response to use as proof you agreed to a purchase or credit card charge.

• Don’t provide your credit card number, bank account information, or other personal information to a caller.

• Don’t send money if the caller tells you to wire money or pay with a prepaid debit card.

“Customers Advised Regarding Possible Scam.”