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Queens Chronicle

NYPD safety tips to prevent scams, theft

Cops on lookout for fake utility workers

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Posted: Thursday, December 13, 2012 10:30 am | Updated: 6:36 pm, Thu Dec 13, 2012.

The NYPD is reminding residents that personal and home safety can be greatly enhanced by not opening doors for strangers, particularly those who might be attempting to impersonate utility employees or profesional home maintenance personnel.

“If something is suspicious, call 911,” said Capt. Thomas Conforti, commanding officer of the NYPD’s 112th Precinct, at a community forum held in Forest Hills on Dec. 5.

General prevention tips

• Never let anyone in your home without an appointment or proper identification.

• Keep a check on neighbors, and be alert to the presence of anyone in your neighborhood who is looking to perform home repairs and gain entry to residences.

• Immediately report any suspicious activity to the police.

Utility workers

Beware of people who:

• claim to work for utility companies and state that your service will be cut off if you don’t pay your bill in cash immediately;

• claim they must gain access to your home because of an emergency situation such as a gas or water leak; or

• ask to see a copy of your bill for any reason.

Even if ID is shown at the door, call the utility company to verify that the person works for it. There have been cases in which people use fake identification and fake uniforms to gain access to people’s homes.

In apartment buildings

• Be wary of maintenance people looking to gain access to fix or look at heating or cooling systems; and

• call your superintendent or management company before allowing any worker you do not recognize access to your home.

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