Guelph hydro warning residents of texting scam demanding payments

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In a twist on an all too familiar scam, Guelph hydro are warning customers of a new phone scam where fraudsters are texting residents pretending to be representatives of Guelph hydro and demanding payments or their hydro will be shut off.

“We don’t text message our consumers so this would be a case of ‘smishing’,” Sandy Manners, director of corporate communications, said.

Smishing refers to text message scams used by cybercriminals that try to lure people into providing account information, passwords, or credit card information.

“That’s because because people are using mobile devices more,” Manners said. “Cyber criminals have become wise to the fact that people are suspicious of their emails and so they are trying a new avenue so people reveal information.”

The fake text messages asked people to tap a link that came with the text message, which may have asked them to answer questions over text, telephone or on a website. Manners said fortunately none of the customers were fooled.

She adds that this is the first time Guelph Hydro has received reports of this type of scam. However, she said that in talks with Hydro One, they have started to see this trend in other municipalities.

Customers are being reminded if they receive a scam text, email or phone call to never provide any personal information and to report the scam to local police.

Read the full story over at CBC.

This story was summarized by Canadian Fraud News Inc.