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WPS Alerts Customers to a Utility Phone Call ScamSubmitted: 03/01/2013
Story By Melissa Constanzer

WPS Alerts Customers to a Utility Phone Call Scam
ACROSS THE NORTHWOODS - Your phone rings with a call. On the other end the caller says your power will be shut down if you don't pay within the hour. The callers ask for either cash or a prepaid credit card number.

It's a growing trend that one utility company wants you to be aware. Wisconsin Public Service says people have been calling customers pretending to be the utility company.

"First of all, we're not disconnecting any residential or small commercial accounts during this time because of the winter martourium. And then secondly, we never ask for a prepaid debit card for payment," says Leah Van Zile, Community Relations Director.

For customers that are late on payments, the call can be decieving. However, there are a few things you can do to ensure the call isn't a scam.

"Any time you get a call like that, and it seems suspicious, you can take down the callers information. A lot of times, at that time, they will hang up because they don't want to give out any information," says Van Zile.

If information is given, ask to call back after double checking with the power company to verify. And if you do catch a scam, notify your utility company.


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 IN OTHER NEWS
What We're Working OnSubmitted: 11/17/2017

- Tonight on Newswatch 12:

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More than 500 people filed in as the doors opened at 6 a.m.

The line didn't slow down for 15 minutes after that.

Many customers came to grab last-minute hunting gear including hunting licenses.

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WASHINGTON - The chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers says he met yesterday with a senator who opposes the senate's tax overhaul plan.

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"I don't know the motive behind it, what triggered it, what was said. I have a detective now writing a search warrant. We have some evidence inside the house that we want to secure," said Elvins. "It appears to be an isolated incident." 

The chief did not believe anyone else is in danger.


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LAONA - Spruce saplings his students planted decades ago have grown to tower above Don Kircher as he stands on a forest trail near Laona.

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MERRILL - The Brown family lost everything when David Ostrowksi burned their Merrill home down about two years ago. 

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 Last year Joe got back to one of his passions for the first time. 
 
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About two years ago 23- year- old David Ostrowski said he wanted someone to feel what it was like to lose everything.

"The guy that did it didn't even know them. I just didn't understand why," said Brown family friend and general manager of Peterson Sand and Gravel in Merrill Brandon Peterson.

Ostrowski got almost two decades in prison for burning down the Brown's family home in Merrill. 

He snuck in their garage and lit Brown's 1935 Ford Sedan on fire.

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