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O&R: Require Utility Workers at Your Home to Show I.D.; Stony Point Incident Underscores Need for Caution

Orange and Rockland Utilities, Inc. (O&R) today renewed its urgent call for customers to confirm — by requesting to see a Company identification card — whether the utility worker who comes to their door is a real O&R employee or a fake.

All O&R employees and contractors are required to carry color photo I.D. cards during their workday. If a person comes to your door claiming to be an O&R employee or contractor, ask to see the card.

If individuals representing themselves as O&R employees or contractors cannot produce a legitimate photo I.D. card, terminate further contact with them, lock your door and call the police.

O&R's renewed advisory comes after a woman in Stony Point yesterday denied entry to her home to a man claiming he "worked for O&R" and asked to enter her home to "read her gas pipe".

The incident occurred about 10 a.m. Wednesday morning.

The imposter could not produce an O&R I.D. card. A medium-build, bearded man in his late 20's, the man was dressed in a blue uniform and wore a grey safety vest. He was driving an older model station wagon. After the woman refused the imposter entry, he attempted again to establish that he was an O&R employee and enter the house. He showed the woman an electronic tablet with an entry listing her address and her husband’s name on it — information that is readily available through an easy Internet search. He asked her to confirm the information, which she did.

The man again asked to enter the home and the woman again refused him entry. The man then left. The woman called O&R Customer Service at 1-877-434-4100 and was instructed to immediately call the Stony Point police to report the incident, which she did.

Stony Point police followed up with O&R Corporate Security to determine whether any O&R contractors were working for the Company in Stony Point on Wednesday. A review by O&R of the work assignment logs showed no O&R contractors working in Stony Point on Wednesday.

For unscheduled utility work at customers' homes, such as meter reading or emergency repairs, customers are urged to ask to see the utility worker's company identification card before admitting them to the customer’s home or transacting any business with them. To verify an O&R employee's identity, you can call O&R Customer Service at 1-877-434-4100.

When O&R makes a service appointment to visit a customer's home, O&R will provide the customer with a unique service order number. When the utility worker arrives at a customer's home, the customer should ask the utility worker for his or her I.D. card and the service order number. The customer should confirm that the service order number matches the one provided, when the appointment was made, before admitting that worker into the home.

If the utility worker fails to provide the number for the appointment, the customer is to break off contact, lock the door and call the police. Customers can also call a dedicated number, (845) 577-3526, to verify an employee’s identity.

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