by Peter Grady –
A new scam saying that president Obama will help individuals pay their utility bills indicates the extent to which people are dependent on the government for support.
While multiple scams often make their rounds in an attempt to bilk individuals of their money, a new one is making its rounds across the country.
The way this one works is utility customers are contacted by individuals telling them that President Obama has established a new federal assistance program as part of the government bailout program. The program supposedly is intended to permit the government to pay a person’s utility bills.
In order to “sign up” for the program, they must register by surrendering their social security numbers and other information. They then are given a bank account and routing number which they are told to use when paying their bills online. While some have received the information in e-mails there have been reports of individuals going into neighborhoods with flyers touting the program.
The problem is when a person pays the bill using the banking information they were given, the utility initially approves the payment and sends them a payment confirmation notice. This will often cause the individuals to tell others about the program.
However, later when the payment is not processed, the utility company rescinds the credit and the individual is once again liable for the amount due, which could not include late fees and they could face the possibility of a service interruption. Meanwhile the individual has compromised their personal information when they “signed up” for the program.
The scams appear to have affected customers in North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Utah, California and some New England states.
Heath Montgomery with the Weld County District Attorney’s office said while there have not been any official reports of residents being taken in by the scam, he has heard anecdotally of people who have received it via e-mail.
“We always encourage people to be skeptical of online offers, especially if it seems too good to be true,” Montgomery said.
Part of the reason for the scams success could be that under the Obama administration the number of Americans on government assistance programs has increased significantly, with some actually expecting the president to pay their bills.
A YouTube video from 2008 shows an Obama supporter saying if Obama is elected, “I won’t have to worry about putting gas in my car, I won’t have to worry about paying my mortgage,” if Obama is elected.
Shortly after the 2008 election WJR in Michigan reported how people were standing in line to get “Obama cash.”
A woman is asked what she is standing in line for, she responds, “to get some money.” When asked what kind of money she says, “Obama money.”
When the interviewer asked where it was coming from she said, “Obama” and that he got it form “his stash.”
Following the Supreme Court ruling upholding ObamaCare, supporters of the healthcare law said while they supported the ruling they felt the law did not go far enough and everyone should receive free health care.