Columbia Police Department reports utility phone scam

Wednesday, June 25, 2014 | 6:13 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — A Columbia utility customer reported a phone scam Wednesday, according to a Columbia Police Department news release.

The customer received a phone call about an unpaid electric bill from someone claiming to be a utility company employee, according to the release. The customer noticed the area code was not local, and began to question the caller. After the call, the customer reported the incident to the City of Columbia Finance Department.

Utility bills for the city of Columbia are due 20 days after the date listed on the bill. If the bill is not paid within that time frame, the customer is notified by a mailed notice and an automated phone call alerts the customer two days before utilities are shut off, according to the release. City staff members are not allowed to take payments over the phone.

Supervising editor is Mary Ryan.

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