Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Scammers targeting Chelan PUD customers with aggressive tactics

Posted

WENATCHEE - Chelan PUD is warning customers about an aggressive wave of scammers attempting to extort payments through intimidation and deception this week. Over a dozen customers have reported receiving calls, made in both English and Spanish, that demand immediate bill payment and threaten to shut off their electric service if they refuse.

These scammers are becoming increasingly bold, utilizing more forceful threats and even manipulating caller ID technology to make their calls appear as if they are coming from Chelan PUD's actual phone numbers. Their tactics are designed to catch customers off guard and pressure them into making hasty payments.

Chelan PUD advises that these calls are likely scams if the caller demands immediate payment via unconventional methods like cash, credit card, wire transfer or prepaid cards. Requests for extensive personal information like account numbers, addresses or social security numbers are also red flags. Evening and weekend call times and blocked or out-of-area caller ID numbers are other indicators of potential scam activity.

The utility company states it will never demand immediate payment over the phone nor request alternative untraceable payment methods from customers. If customers receive such a call, they are instructed to hang up and call Chelan PUD directly at the published number (509) 661-8002 to inquire about the legitimacy of the request.

Chelan PUD encourages customers to visit chelanpud.org for more information on recognizing and avoiding utility scam tactics that are on the rise.

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