LONGVIEW, Texas, July 29, 2021 – Be aware of scammers posing as utility workers and demanding immediate payment or personal information. Recently, Southwestern Electric Power Co. (SWEPCO) learned of telephone scammers contacting customers in the Hallsville and Marshall areas and threatening to disconnect service unless the customer pays the balance immediately.
SWEPCO will never call customers and demand immediate payment, and the public should know fraud attempts are more prevalent during the pandemic. If you suspect a scammer has contacted you by phone or email, call SWEPCO at the number on your bill to confirm your account’s activity.
“Scammers are calling customers and asking to verify payment information over the phone, something a SWEPCO representative will never do,” said Michelle Marcotte, SWEPCO spokeswoman. “If you believe a scammer has contacted you, immediately hang up the phone, delete the email or shut the door. You can verify your account status by using the SWEPCO app, logging into SWEPCO.com or calling us directly at 1-888-216-3523.”
Scammers use phone, online and in-person tactics. They typically threaten the disconnection of electric service and demand immediate payment or insist that customers purchase a prepaid debit/cash card, such as a Green Dot card, and ask for the card’s number, granting the scammer instant access to the card’s funds. Customers can check account information by logging into their account on the SWEPCO mobile app or swepco.com. Find more ways to recognize a scam at SWEPCO.com/StopScams.
If someone approaches you in person, ask to see an employee ID badge. SWEPCO personnel should be wearing appropriate company logo shirts, hard hats or ball caps. Look for a SWEPCO truck parked outside. You can verify callers or visitors claiming to be from SWEPCO by calling the customer service line at 1-888-216-3523. If you ever feel you are in physical danger, call 911.