Scammers are conning homeowners out of thousands of dollars. Find out how to protect your family.
Outsmart Scammers by Learning to Recognize Scams
Con artists have long preyed on utility customers, using threats and urgency to trick people into surrendering credit card information, money orders, gift cards or cash.
In a growing phone con, scammers impersonate Consumers Energy workers and contact homeowners in an effort to get some fast cash. They’ll:
Inform the homeowner that he or she is late on an energy payment or past-due on a bill
Notify the individual that a Consumers Energy truck is on its way to shut off power within 24 hours if a payment isn’t made
Walk the customer through an online money transfer or instruct them to go to their nearest convenience store to purchase a prepaid gift card or send money via wire transfer
Spot the Scam
1. If I'm late on a bill, Consumers Energy will demand immediate payment over the phone.
2. If I don't pay my energy bill, my power could be shut off within 24 hours.
3. Consumers Energy employees will ask for my credit or debit card number over the phone.
4. If I'm falling behind on payments, I should send a wire transfer or gift card to make up the payment.
5. If my caller ID says Consumers Energy, I can feel confident sharing personal information, including my birthday, Social Security Number and banking information.
Spot the Scam
Scammers assume you don’t know how we work with our customers, especially when it comes to billing. This knowledge can keep your family safe from scams.
We never use threats. We will never threaten to shut your power off within 24 hours. If you feel pressured for immediate payment or personal information, hang up the phone and contact customer service.
We never make demands. We won’t demand payment over the phone. Instead, we offer many ways to make payments safely and conveniently.
We never ask for prepaid credit cards. If a caller specifically asks you to pay by prepaid credit card or wire transfer, this is a huge warning sign. This is not a typical form of payment.
We never ask for personal information over the phone. We will not contact you by phone and ask for your account number or payment information. Sometimes con artists will attempt to trip you up by pretending to know your account number. We don’t do this either.
Keep Your Identity Safe
Identity thieves want access to your account. That’s why it’s important to take necessary precautions and safeguard your information.