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Shay Hargus Webb's Blog

By Shay Hargus Webb | Agent in Austin, TX

Austin Scam Alert for Utility Customers

Austin Scam Alert for Utility Customers

Austin Scam Alert for Utility CustomersIn today's high tech world, thieves are getting more and more creative in how to part you from your money.  That's why Austin citizens need to be on guard with their financial information.  The Austin Police Department has been made aware of a new Austin scam alert for utility customers and wishes to pass along the information to Austin consumers.

Austin Energy Scam

Some City of Austin utility customers have received phone calls from someone who claims they are with the Austin Energy company and show that the customer is behind on their payments.  This scammer then informs the AE customer that they must make a payment immediately or they will be disconnected.  The customer is then given a bank account number that they are told they need to wire money into and are directed to a non-AE sanctioned payment location where they are told they must wire the money from.

Tips to Avoid Being a Victim of an Austin Energy Scam

  • The Austin Police Department and Austin Energy would like all Austin citizens to know that AE will NEVER ask for a wire transfer to make a payment...EVER.
  • AE personnel NEVER ask for credit card info over the phone or require Austin customers to purchase a money card to make a payment.
  • AE will accept a walk-in payment only at specific AE authorized payment centers and no where else.  An AE customer must provide a copy of their utility statements to the payment center before they will accept payment.

Search the MLS for South Austin homes for sale

If you think you have received a phone call from an Austin scammer, immediately hang up and report it to 3-1-1 or (512) 974-2000.  Your caller ID will always show 512-494-4900 if it is a legitimate call from the City of Austin.  If another number is highlighted on your caller ID or the call is blocked from caller ID and they claim they are with the City of Austin Energy Department, hang up and report it immediately.  Some customers who were contacted by the scammer weren't even behind on their accounts.

If you think you may have received a call from a possible Austin Energy scam artist and are unsure of the status of your account, you can always call the City of Austin at (512) 494-9400 to find out.  This Austin scam alert for utility customers has been provided by the Austin Police Department to help inform its citizens of possible identity thief threats in the area.  It is always wise not to give out any personal financial information (credit card numbers, bank account info, social security information, etc) over the phone to anyone you do not know.

Shay Hargus, your Austin real estate specialist 

Originally posted on my All About Austin Texas real estate blog here: http://allaboutaustintexas.com/austin-scam-alert-for-utility-customers/.

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