Cleco educates customers for Utility Scam Awareness Day
PINEVILLE, La. – Cleco is standing with fellow utility companies in observance of the third annual Utility Scam Awareness Day.
“Utility customers can be taken advantage of by imposters posing as legitimate representatives of a utility company,” said Denise Fisher, Cleco call center supervisor. “Utility scammers are now becoming increasingly sophisticated, and Cleco is committed to raising awareness and educating our customers on these schemes to prevent them from falling victim.”
Utility scammers often will strike in the form of phone, in-person or online tactics. Many reports of these schemes indicate that the scammer will threaten a customer with disconnection of services if the customer does not remit payment immediately. The scammer encourages the customer to provide them with a pre-paid card number, or their personal account information, which the scammer will use for their personal benefit.
“Scammers today can be very convincing and typically target customers who are most vulnerable, including senior citizens and low-income households,” said Regina Collins, Cleco call center manager. “Cleco customers who learn to detect and report these predatory scams are playing a crucial role in keeping themselves and their community safe.”
Signs of a potential scammer:
Request for immediate payment: A scammer may instruct a customer to provide them with their personal account information over the phone, in-person or online. When the scammer is given the customer’s personal information, the scammer instantly has access to the customer’s funds.
Threat to disconnect services: A scammer may warn the customer that there is an outstanding balance on their account, and if it is not paid within a certain time period, services will be disconnected.
How Cleco customers can protect themselves:
If a Cleco customer receives a suspicious phone call, hang up immediately and do not call back the number given by the caller. Cleco customers can reach a Cleco representative by calling 1-800-622-6537, reaching out through Cleco’s official Facebook page, @ClecoPower, or visiting a local customer service office. Also, customers can verify account information through the company’s self-service application, MyAccount.
A Cleco representative will never demand how a customer should remit payment. In fact, Cleco offers multiple ways for customers to pay a bill, including accepting payments online, by phone, automatic bank draft, mail or in-person at customer service offices or authorized payment centers. A list of authorized payment locations, including Cleco customer service offices, is available at cleco.com.