Public Service Company of Oklahoma (PSO) issued a
utility scam warning Wednesday to customers as part of Utility Scam Awareness Day.
PSO customers have reported scams or attempted scams 255 times so far this year, including 18 times in October. Those numbers are below comparable 2022 numbers.
Utility Scam Awareness Day is an annual observance of Utilities United Against Scams, a consortium of 150 U.S. and Canadian utilities. The theme of this year’s campaign is “Screen the Search,” which reflects the rise in utility imposter scams using digital methods, including searchengine scams.
Digital scam tactics that customers should be wary of include:
• Sponsored ads on search engines that lead to an identical — but fake — utility bill payment pages;
• QR codes that scammers falsely claim link to utility payment pages, and
• Texts from a scammer claiming to be a utility representative, with a link to an impostor payment page.
Other common signs of scams, include:
• Demands for immediate payment,
• Threats to disconnect service immediately, and
• Requests for a specific form of payment, such as a pre-paid debit card.
PSO personnel do not demand immediate payments, threaten immediate disconnects or accept pre-paid debit cards.
If you are suspicious of a caller claiming to be from PSO, hang up and call the PSO Customer Service Center: 1-833-PSO-POWR (776-7697).
“Consumer awareness is the most effective way to protect yourself against scam artists,” said PSO Director of Customer Services and Marketing Scott Ritz.
“Be careful. When in doubt about anyone claiming to be from PSO, check it out.”
Source: PSO press release