Consumer Protection Alert - Beware of Fake Utility Account Calls
The Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection (DATCP) has issued a consumer alert warning that a number of Wisconsin businesses have received threatening phone calls about their utility accounts. The Department indicated that scammers are making calls falsely claiming to represent the local utility company and are calling businesses or consumers and threatening them with disconnection of services unless immediate payment is made. Please note utility companies will contact you by mail if your account is overdue and may follow up with a phone call reminder. Also, if a caller demands a utility payment by prepaid debit card or wire transfer, it is a scam. If you are unsure of the status of your accounts, contact your service providers using the numbers provided by your utilities or listed in the phone book.
DATCP advises that you should never provide personal or financial information over the phone unless you initiated the call. Additionally, if you receive a voicemail requesting a call back and the caller does not identify themselves or their business, do not return the call. Caller ID systems can also be scammed to display a name and number of an individual or business, so end the call and contact the business or entity directly if you have concerns with the legitimacy of a call. If you think you have been scammed, please visit the Consumer Protection Bureau to file a consumer protection complaint. The Consumer Protection Bureau may be reached at 1-800-422-7128, datcp.wisconsin.gov, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.