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July 28th, 2015

 

Phone Scam Warning For Pacific Power Customers

 

Phone Scam Warning For Pacific Power CustomersPacific Power is warning local residents of a potential phone scam against utility customers taking place in the Northwest.

According to a Pacific Power news release, authorities have received several reports of scammers posing as customer service agents and attempting to extort money and steal personal information.

“The fraud is occurring nationwide, but recent days have seen an upsurge in the Northwest,” said the release.

Those targeted by scammers are likely to encounter this type of phone call, according to the release: A thief posing as a customer service agent calls a residential or business customer demanding payment for overdue bills.

Sometimes, the caller tells the intended victim that they owe a specific amount of money. The scammer then typically advises the customer to make a payment by going to a local store to purchase a pre-paid credit card and provide the card’s code over the phone.

“Pacific Power wants customers to be aware that this is a scam and not a legitimate request,” said the release. “Pacific Power does not use these methods. … When Pacific Power contacts a customer, the representative will always already have the customer’s account number.”

Those who believe they have been the target of such a scam are encouraged to hang up immediately and call 911. They may also call 888-221-7070 to verify if the customer service agent is legitimate.

“So far, this has affected a relatively small number of customers, but any customer being taken advantage of in this way is one too many,” said Valerie Smith, director of customer service, in the release. “We encourage any customer who has been contacted in this manner to report the contact to local law enforcement.”

The release added customers should never provide unsolicited callers or visitors with credit card numbers or any other information that may compromise their financial security.

 

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