SCE&G’s customers warned about scam | News | The Press and Standard
by The Press and Standard | February 4, 2016 5:09 pm
Last Updated: February 4, 2016 at 5:12 pm
South Carolina Electric & Gas urges business and residential customers to be aware that scam artists are posing as SCE&G employees on telephone calls.
Customers have reported instances of individuals portraying themselves as SCE&G employees over the phone, warning of a late utility bill. Scammers will often threaten to turn a customer’s service off if the customer doesn’t make a payment immediately. In some cases, the scammer instructs the customer to purchase a prepaid debit card, or the scammer may ask for the customer’s credit card information.
Other common elements of these scams may include:
The scammer often targets small businesses, such as restaurants, hoping to create a higher sense of urgency.
The scammer suggests a specific store from which the customer can purchase a prepaid card. Scammers like prepaid debit cards because they can obtain the money on the card without showing a photo ID.
The scammer uses the practice of caller ID “spoofing,” which causes the customer’s phone to display a false caller ID. Often, the scammer will “spoof” a local number, perhaps even using the utility’s standard customer service number.
“SCE&G may call a customer about an overdue account balance, but we will ask the customer to provide information that only the customer and SCE&G would know, to validate that the call is legitimate,” said Sam Dozier, vice president of customer service for SCE&G. “If customers have any doubt whatsoever about the legitimacy of a caller, they should hang up and call our customer service line at 1-800-251-7234.”
Dozier said bill payments are accepted at SCE&G business offices, by mail, authorized payment agencies, online or through SCE&G’s phone payment provider, BillMatrix, by calling 1-800-450-9160.
“If you think you may be a victim of a scam, notify your local law enforcement agency immediately,” Dozier said. The South Carolina Department of Consumer Affairs also has a phone line for reporting consumer scams: 800-922-1594 or 803-734-4200.
For more information about how to safeguard against scams, watch our video: http://ow.ly/yuyou. Follow our social media channels: Twitter.com/@scegnews; Facebook.com/scegnews; and YouTube.com/scegnews for the latest updates regarding this issue.