Louisville Gas and Electric (LG&E) Company and Kentucky Utilities (KU) Company are alerting customers of a recent telephone scam that asks businesses to pay their bills over the phone.
Whether at home or at work, LG&E and KU remind consumers to remain alert and report any suspected scams if someone contacts them claiming to represent their local utility.
In this most recent case, the caller claims to be a utility employee and asks for immediate bill payment by credit card or prepaid money card purchased from a local retailer. Reports indicate the caller may be using technology to make the incoming phone number appear to be from the utility. If the targeted customer does not cooperate, the caller threatens to disconnect the person’s electric or natural gas service.
LG&E and KU are working with local authorities and offer the following S.A.F.E. advice to residential and business customers:
· Secure your personal information: LG&E and KU will never call and ask for credit or debit card numbers or other personal information.
· Always remember you have bill payment options: LG&E and KU offer customers a variety of official and secure ways to pay their bill.
· First contact LG&E and KU if you’re suspicious: Customers who receive a suspicious live phone call, email or letter should contact LG&E and KU, which will always verify official communications. LG&E customers should call 502-589-1444 (outside Louisville at 1-800-331-7370). KU customers should call 1-800-981-0600.
· Elect to receive billing notifications: As a courtesy, LG&E and KU offer billing notifications that give customers the option to receive reminders about monthly bills by text, email or phone. Customers must sign up for billing notifications, and the utilities will not directly call customers about their bills if they have not signed up for this feature.
If customers have been impacted by this scam, they should immediately report it to their local police department.
Although the latest scam targets customers by phone, LG&E and KU encourage customers to always obtain positive identification if someone appears at their door stating he or she is there on the utilities’ behalf.
Authentic LG&E and KU ID badges—whether issued to an employee or a contractor—show the utilities’ logos. An employee ID card always has the employee’s name and color photograph on the front as well.
Sometimes there are legitimate service-related reasons the utilities may need access to a customer’s home, but in-person contact at a customer’s home never involves collecting payment for a monthly bill.