PHONE SCAM ALERT: The Newton Police Department has received reports of a phone scam targeting City of Newton electric customers.
The calls have come from phone number 828-624-4000. Callers say they represent Duke Energy and inform the recipient that their electric bill is past due and that their electric service will be disconnected if the balance is not paid within 30 minutes. A callback number of 800-576-0919 is given, which routes recipient back to scammers who demand immediate payment.
The City of Newton never contacts customers to ask for credit card or other payment information over the phone. If you have any questions or receive a call you think may be a scam, please call the Newton Police Department at 828-465-7430.
Duke Energy Fraud and Scam Report
Top Ten Consumer Tips
1. Say no to high-pressure sales pitches. If the offer is only good today, walk away.
2. Always read contracts carefully before you sign them, and make sure all written documents match what you’ve been promised. Never sign a document that you don’t understand or that has blanks to be filled in later.
3. Be cautious when responding to telemarketers, door-to-door sellers, and email or text pitches. Instead of responding to unsolicited offers, decide when and where you want to go shopping.
4. You never have to make a purchase or pay taxes, fees or other expenses in advance to win a prize. Anyone who demands an upfront fee for a prize is trying to scam you.
5. Never give out your Social Security Number, credit card or bank account number or other personal information to anyone you don’t know who contacts you.
6. Be skeptical of upfront fees. North Carolina law makes it illegal to collect advance fees for some types of work, such as foreclosure assistance and debt settlement help. If an advance payment is required for other kinds of transactions, use a credit card when possible. This gives you some protection if your order doesn’t arrive or the work isn’t completed.
7. Do business with companies you know or that come recommended by those you trust. Check out companies with the Attorney General’s Office at 1-877-5-NO-SCAM or your local Better Business Bureau before making major purchases.
8. Join the Do Not Call registry to cut down on unwanted telemarketing calls. To sign up, call 1-888-382-1222 from the number you wish to register or visit www.donotcall.gov. Once you’re on the list, report Do No Call violators to the Attorney General’s Office.
9. Check your credit report regularly. You’re entitled to one free credit report per year from each nationwide credit bureau. To access your free credit reports, visit www.annualcreditreport.com or call 1-877-322-8228.
10. If an offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Source: North Carolina Department of Justice
Emergency services from Newton were recently honored by Willis Reynolds Funeral Home with a luncheon in their honor.
(Pictured left to right)
Jerry Hodge - Newton City Council, Henry Helton - Newton-Conover Rescue Squad, Greg Terry - Drum & Willis-Reynolds Funeral Home, Kevin Yoder - Newton Fire Department, Don Brown - Newton Police Department, Todd Clark - Newton City Manager
The Newton Police Department is proud to be recognized by our corporate partner Target for dedication to the community. Target is a proud supporter of Target @ BLUE which provides support and funding for law enforcement programs and initiatives that support the community.
2017 Special Olympics Torch Run
Officers from the Newton Police Department along with family members and officers from the North Carolin Probation & Parole participated in the 2017 Special Olympics Torch Run.
The Good News!
"Today a lady called the police on some kids that were playing football. One kid, running from a dog, (scared to death) jumped on her air conditioner! Newton Police Department came and turned this into a good thing! Officer C. D. Costner stayed with these boys and played ball for an hour!! He also used this as a learning lesson! He is also starting a program inour area for young children ages 14-21!! Thank youfor taking time out with our boys!! This means so much to show them that cops are good people too!!"
(Posted and shared by a citizen on 02-15-2016)
Once again the Newton Police Department has partnered with South Newton Elementary to participate in Club Day! Once a month officers facilitate a chess club and forensics club for interested students.
Investigator Dane Hoyle teaching chess
Sgt. Cline and Investigator Hoplins teaching forensics
Top Tips for Safe Online Holiday Shopping
Keep a Clean Machine: All the devices you use for shopping - including smartphones and
Think Before you Act: Be wary of communications that offer amazing deals that sound too good to be true, implore you to act immediately - including those about a problem with an order or payment or ask you to view the website via a provided link.
Get Savvy about Wi-Fi Hotspots: Don’t share personal or financial information over an unsecured network (a connection that doesn’t require a password for access). Using the direct web access on your phone (via a 3G/4G connection) is safer than an unsecured wireless network when on your mobile device.
Use Safe Payment Options: Credit cards are generally the safest option because they allow buyers to seek a credit from the issuer if the product isn’t delivered or isn’t what was ordered. Credit cards may have a limit on the monetary amount you will be responsible for paying. Never send cash through the mail or use a money-wiring service.
Keep a Paper Trail: Save records of your online transactions, including the product description, price, online receipt, terms of the sale, and copies of email exchanges with the seller. Read your credit card statements as soon as you get them to make sure there aren’t any unauthorized charges. If there is a discrepancy, call your bank and report it immediately.
For further information please contact SatySafeOnline.org at https://www.staysafeonline.org/stay-safe-online/resources/top-tips-for-safe-online-holiday-shopping/
Rabies Control and Prevention.
The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services would like to highten awareness and educate the public about prevention and control. Provided is a link to the NC DHHS website with valuable information concerning rabies and other communicable diseases.
The Good News!
We are very honored and proud to have the Good News! coming from Newton. Please follow the link provided for a story by Kristen Hampton from WBTV about our very own Eveleene Fowler and Ken Campbell..
IRS-Impersonation Telephone Scam
An aggressive and sophisticated phone scam targeting taxpayers, including recent immigrants, has been making the rounds throughout the country. Callers claim to be employees of the IRS, but are not. These con artists can sound convincing when they call. They use fake names and bogus IRS identification badge numbers. They may know a lot about their targets, and they usually alter the caller ID to make it look like the IRS is calling.
Victims are told they owe money to the IRS and it must be paid promptly through a pre-loaded debit card or wire transfer. If the victim refuses to cooperate, they are then threatened with arrest, deportation or suspension of a business or driver’s license. In many cases, the caller becomes hostile and insulting.
Or, victims may be told they have a refund due to try to trick them into sharing private information.
If the phone isn't answered, the scammers often leave an “urgent” callback request.
Note that the IRS will never: 1) call to demand immediate payment, nor will the agency call about taxes owed without first having mailed you a bill; 2) demand that you pay taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe; 3) require you to use a specific payment method for your taxes, such as a prepaid debit card; 4) ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone; or 5) threaten to bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.