Safe Families

Sep 5, 2013 11:15 AM by MELISSA CANONE

Cleco warns customers of fraudulent calls through a bill payment scam

PINEVILLE, La., Sept. 5, 2013 - Cleco customers are again receiving fraudulent calls from individuals claiming to be Cleco representatives demanding payment of bills or face power disconnection.

Cleco reminds all customers that it will not call customers asking them to wire money for bill payment. The company also does not tell customers where to pay their bills or the type of payment method a customer should use.

Cleco states that the calls typically come from a telephone number with a 512 area code. However, the company encourages customers to assume a call is fraudulent if the caller is demanding immediate payment.

"The callers mainly are dialing business customers' cell phones; however, callers have targeted some residential customers, too," said Shirley Turner, general manager of customer experience management for Cleco. "We are working with law enforcement officials to help track these calls, but the best way for customers to protect themselves is to contact Cleco if they receive a call demanding payment."
Callers first began making fraudulent calls in July; however, until recently, the calls had stopped. It is undetermined if the current calls are connected to the July calls.

"We cannot stress enough that Cleco will not contact customers by phone to demand payment," said Turner. "We do sometimes use an automated system to notify customers of possible disconnection when we do not receive payment. However, our representatives will not call and tell customers where or how to pay their bills."

Cleco customers who receive these fraudulent calls should report them to Cleco at 1-800-622-6537.

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