Business, Crime, Health

Department of Public Works warns residents of new COVID-19 scams

UPDATE: Comptroller Peter Franchot is also warning residents to be wary of stimulus scams.  More in the tweet embedded below.

Original story below…

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BALTIMORE, MD—Department of Public Works Acting Director Matthew W. Garbark on Monday advised Baltimore-area water customers to be aware of scams being done during the COVID-19 pandemic.

DPW advises that scammers may call customers on the phone or come to their homes claiming to be from DPW.  The scammers then request money. The Department of Public Works does not make collections in this manner. In the past, water imposters/scammers have worn official-looking clothing.

Some scammers may ask residents to purchase a water filter. DPW says Baltimore’s drinking water is safe and clean. Coronavirus has not been detected in drinking water and is not transmitted by water. No filter is necessary.

Citizens should be cautious and never allow such individuals to defraud them of money or allow them to enter homes.

From the release:

“Residents should remember the following:

  • Baltimore’ drinking water is safe and clean.  You do not need a water filter and you do not need to boil your water.
  • DPW does not shut off any water service due to water bill nonpayment.
  • No DPW employee will come to your home unless you have requested assistance and an appointment has been made.
  • DPW employees are not authorized to enter your home without your permission.
  • Always ask to see a Baltimore City employee identification card, which includes a photograph.
  • Don’t second guess yourself; promptly report any and all suspicious activity to the Police Department by dialing 911 immediately.”

For help with non-emergency questions about water or sewer-related work, Baltimore City residents may call 311. From Baltimore County, call 410-396-5352.

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