Scams - Utility Company Scams, Prepaid Credit Card Scams, and Phone Scams
Have you or a loved one been scammed over a utility bill?
Sophisticated scammers use software that lets them show a utility company or government agency on the caller ID, and some have gone so far to set up fake phone lines to call them back on.
As far as the utility scam, the bad actor threatens to turn off your utilities unless you pay your "delinquent" bill. The scammer demands you pay with a prepaid card, gift card, money order, or western union.
If someone calls claiming to be a utility company agent or federal employee and asks for money, this is the biggest red flag. The IRS will send mail or written notice if they want to collect. Never will they just call you out of the blue.
Utility companies or the IRS will never ask you for your bank information or a credit card number over the phone. Nor will they ask for prepaid cards, or you to western union your payment of them.
Here are some simple steps to take immediately if you suspect a scam:
- Call the utility company directly with your account information to confirm any potential balance owed.
- Delete emails, phone calls, or texts that require immediate action, and need you to put in private personal information.
- Delete requests for personal information such as bank account numbers, user names, and passwords, credit card numbers, or social security numbers.