HURRICANE – Reports of customer contacts by someone posing as a representative of Hurricane City indicate a new, but common, telephone scam in play.
The Hurricane City representatives are warning utility customers to be aware of scammers posing as city employees after several recent reports that customers have been contacted by an unknown person telling them they were behind on their electric bill. This unknown person then requested payment be set up on a credit card.
The city representatives say it’s important that Hurricane City customers understand that this is a scam.
City representatives discourage all customers from providing personal information, including credit card information, over the phone. They recommend that you use caution when giving out any personal information and if you ever question what is being asked, either contact the company directly or contact your local police department.
Important tips offered by Hurricane City for customer safety and security:
- Hurricane City will never contact you by phone to inform you that you are behind on your bill.
- Hurricane City will never request payment by phone.
- Hurricane City would encourage customers to call the utility office if they have any question or concerns about their bill.
Tips offered by the Better Business Bureau to avoid falling for scams:
- Be wary of giving personal information over the phone. Never provide your Social Security Number, credit card number or banking information to anyone requesting it over the phone or at your home unless you initiated the contact and feel confident with whom you are speaking.
- Use your own personal information. Always pay your bills with your own personal information; never pay your bills with information that is not your own.
- Do your research. If you receive a call claiming to be your utility company and feel pressured for immediate payment or personal information, hang up the phone and call the customer service number on your utility bill.
- Beware of the door-to-door sales approach. Never allow anyone into your home to check electrical wiring, natural gas pipes or appliances unless you scheduled an appointment or reported a utility problem. Always ask utility employees for proper identification.
- Be proactive. If you already have provided information to someone claiming to offer this service, contact your bank immediately. Also contact the three national credit bureaus – Equifax, Experian and TransUnion – and request a notation made on your account so that it doesn’t impact your credit rating.
- Inform others. Share this information with friends and family so they do not become victims. The elderly are common victims of this type of scam, but anyone who pays a utility bill is a potential victim.
- If you have been subject to this scam, please contact the Hurricane City Police Department.
- Visit the Utah Division of Consumer Protection’s website if you have a possible scam to report or a consumer complaint to file.
- Visit the Better Business Bureau’s Scam List to help prevent becoming a victim of other scams.
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