Four Ways to Protect Yourself from Utility Scammers This Holiday Season, from Dominion Energy
Each year, utility customers experience a surge in scam phone calls, especially around the holidays. This Utility Scam Awareness Week (Nov. 15 – 20), utility operator Dominion Energy is reminding people of the telltale signs of utility scams and what to do to stay safe.
Keep in mind: The advice Dominion is offering applies to most utility customers around the country.
“An immediate red flag is when someone calls you claiming to be a utility representative and threatens to disconnect your service if you don’t make an immediate payment over the phone,” said Utibe Bassey, Dominion Energy’s vice president of customer experience. “That’s a telltale sign of a scam because we don’t use scare tactics, and we never demand immediate payment over the phone. The best way to protect yourself is to know what a scam sounds like and what to do if you’re targeted.”
Dominion Energy offers the following tips, so customers know what to do if they suspect a scammer has contacted them:
Slow down – Utility scammers pressure customers to act quickly by instilling fear and a sense of urgency.
Stop – Utilities like Dominion never demand immediate payment and do not accept payment using prepaid or gift cards.
Hang up – Some scammers may appear on your caller ID as though they are calling from your utility. When in doubt, do not provide any personal information and hang up.
Verify – Scammers do not typically know the customer’s account balance. Fact check the scammer’s claims by signing into the Dominion Energy app, online at dominionenergy.com or calling the number located on an energy bill. (Check with your energy provider to see if they offer a similar means of checking out potential scammers).
To learn more about the warning signs of scam activity, visit dominionenergy.com/scams.
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