EVANSVILLE, Ind. — Vectren, a member of the award-winning Utilities United Against Scams (UUAS), is continuing its efforts to remind customers of the tactics scammers use to steal money from customers and to educate customers on how they can guard against falling victim to impostor utility scams.
The third annual Utility Scam Awareness Day is today, Nov. 14, and is supported by a week-long advocacy and awareness campaign focused on exposing the tactics of scammers. UUAS, a consortium of more than 100 U.S. and Canadian electric, water and natural gas companies and their respective trade associations, continues to raise awareness of utility scams targeting customers.
Customers who suspect that they have been victims of fraud or who feel threatened during contact with a scammer should contact their utility companies or local law enforcement authorities. Also, customers should never purchase a prepaid debit card or gift card to avoid service disconnection or shutoff. Legitimate utility companies do not specify how customers should make a bill payment, and they always offer a variety of ways to pay a bill, including accepting payments online, by phone, automatic bank draft, mail or in person.
“Vectren continues to partner with UUAS to keep our customers educated and aware of possible scam activity,” said Brad Ellsworth, president of Vectren Indiana-South. “Vectren would never request a customer to purchase and use a prepaid debit or credit card in order to keep their service on, and we urge any customer who is approached for such payments to contact Vectren immediately.”
If someone calls, texts, appears or emails saying a customer has to pay a bill immediately to avoid disconnection, the customer should tell the caller he would like to verify that the caller is a legitimate utility company representative by calling a verified number for the utility company found on the company’s website or on a monthly bill. The Federal Trade Commission’s website is also a good source of information about how to protect personal information and to stay informed on the different types of impostor scams.
Vectren continues to work with law enforcement, other utilities and the media as well as the Better Business Bureau to denounce the scams. If customers receive a phone call they believe to be fraudulent, local law enforcement should be contacted. Customers can also utilize Vectren.com’s live chat option or call 800-227-1376 to reach Vectren’s contact center, which is open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday.
Visit www.utilitiesunited.org for information and tips about how customers can protect themselves from impostor utility scams, or follow along on social media: Twitter @U_U_A_S and Facebook @UtilitiesUnited.