Electric utilities across the state, including some cooperatives. are noticing a sudden increase in phone fraud. Often times, the caller will say they work for a particular utility, threatening immediate disconnection if they don't receive payment over the phone.
Southwest Iowa REC will never call to threaten immediate disconnection and we urge them to end suspicious calls and contact the co-op directly to verify the call.
How to recognize a scam call:
1) The caller threatens immediate disconnection. Sometimes the caller will claim a crew is already en route to disconnect service. Your co-op makes several attempts to contact members regarding overdue bills. Disconnection is a last resort, not a first step in the process.
2) The caller insists on a prepaid debit card (often a Green Dot card) as the only acceptable form of payment. Your co-op accepts several different forms of payment.
3) The caller asks for credit card numbers, account numbers, balances or other personal information. Consumers should never give out personal information over the phone to a suspicious caller.