LUS warns of utility phone scam - KATC.com | Continuous News Coverage | Acadiana-Lafayette

LUS warns of utility phone scam

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Lafayette Utilities System Lafayette Utilities System

Lafayette Utilities System is warning about scam phone calls being made to customers from people claiming to represent their utility company.

Officials say that the scam callers threaten to disconnect electric service to the customer unless a delinquent bill is paid. They then request customers to call an 800 number to make a payment over the phone.

In a release, LUS says that these types of phone scams are common. According to the Federal Trade Commission, "Scammers can use computers to make it look like they're calling from one place - when, in fact, they're someplace else.  If you get a call from someone telling you to make a payment via PayPal, or to buy a GreenDot card or a gift card, it's probably a scam."

 LUS has provided the following tips for what customers need to know regarding scam identification:

  • When a payment is past due, customers are sent friendly reminders via automated calls or mailed post cards.
  • Before a bill status is discussed with a customer, account verification is ALWAYS required.
  • When customers speak with a Customer Service Representative, they may be given the option to pay over the phone, but that process will NEVER be performed by a live person.
  • The automated methods LUS provides for our customers to pay a bill would NEVER include methods of payment such as Paypal, Western Union, or GreenDot.
  • If you get a call, email, text, or even a visit from someone telling you to make a utility bill payment, and you believe it could be a scam, contact your utility company on the phone number that appears on your bill, describe what happened, and report the scammers to the Federal Trade Commission and your local law enforcement.
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