People’s Energy Cooperative reporting phone utility scams

People’s Energy Cooperative reporting phone utility scams
People’s Energy Cooperative reporting phone utility scams(KNOE)
Published: Nov. 29, 2022 at 11:41 AM CST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

ORONOCO, Minn. (KTTC) – People’s Energy Cooperative (PEC) received multiple reports from members that they were targets of phone utility scams Tuesday morning.

According to PEC, people described being told that their electricity would be shut off in 30 minutes without immediate payment and reported the call came from a ‘507′ phone number.

PEC employees will never request bank or payment information from members over the phone. Member service representatives will only ask for information to identify who a member is. 

Payment information can only be accepted through PEC’s secure, automated phone system as well as through its online account management system, SmartHub.

The following are a few reminders on how to take control of the situation when you’re being targeted by a scammer:

  • Take your time: Utility scammers try to create a sense of urgency, so you’ll act fast and hand over personal information, especially over the phone.  Take a moment to think about the situation before acting.
  • Be suspicious: Scammers typically request immediate payments through prepaid debit cards or third-party apps.  Unusual requests like this should raise red flags.  Remember, if the request seems strange and out of the ordinary, you’re likely being targeted by a scammer.
  • Confirm before you act: If you’re contacted by someone claiming to represent People’s Energy or another utility but you’re unsure, just hang up the phone and call the utility directly.  You can reach PEC at (800) 214-2694 to verify the situation.