PUCO warns of utility payments scam

News Journal

COLUMBUS — The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) is warning utility customers to beware of a payment scam that has re-surfaced across the state recently.

The scam is targeting electric and natural gas utility customers, both residential and small business.

A caller claiming to represent the utility informs the customer that they owe money from their past bill and must pay immediately or face termination of service. Customers are instructed to purchase a prepaid debit card and then call a toll-free number to transfer the money.

Utilities do not ask for prepaid debit cards for payment and will provide ample time for customers to make a payment before service is terminated. Customers having questions about their account should call the appropriate utility.

A listing of customer service numbers for PUCO regulated utility companies can be found at http://www.puco.ohio.gov/be-informed/consumer-topics/customer-service-phone-numbers-for-major-utility-companies/#sthash.eEYiGboe.dpbs.

Customers believing they have been a victim of payment fraud are encouraged to contact their local authorities as well.

For help with utility-related matters, call the PUCO Call Center at (800) 686-PUCO (7826) or visit www.PUCO.ohio.gov.


News Journal