WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWTI) — New York State Police are warning the public of a scam that is making its way through Northern New York.

In a press release, troopers said there are people posing to be Spectrum workers and requesting people to pay for their bills with gift cards. This going on in the Essex, Hamilton, Franklin, Clinton and St. Lawrence county areas.

The caller in most scenarios will advise the victim to get a specific amount of money in gift cards. The victim will purchase the gift card then read the information on the back of the gift card to the caller or send the bar code on the back of the gift card to the caller. 

At this point the money on the gift card is siphoned off. These gift card increments could be anywhere from $50-$500. Once the caller receives this information, the money is transferred , and the victim is out the money.

State Police want to remind everyone if you are receiving these types of phone calls to be very cautious. Always verify the caller’s identity, if the scammer is claiming to be from a certain company, check with the customer service representatives of that company by calling the company on a trusted number directly.

Do this prior to giving out any of your personal information. Do not send gift cards, gift card numbers, money transfers, or cash. Once the scammer receives it, it is gone.