HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- CenterPoint Energy is warning all customers that there is a rapid increase in phone calls and door-to-door and text messaging scams, saying that a service will be disconnected.
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According to reports, some individuals are posing as CenterPoint Energy representatives and are using multiple tactics, such as requesting to check electric meters at customers' homes and cloning company numbers, threatening to disconnect services.
In a release from CenterPoint, the company says they would never call a customer and demand payment over the phone to prevent disconnecting services. Nor would they ask customers to make payments with a pre-paid debit card, a form of cryptocurrency, gift cards, or third-party digital payment mobile apps.
"We encourage customers to remain on high alert as we continue to see utility scams on the rise across our service territories," said Tal Centers, Vice President, Texas Gas. "Any customer who is approached with what they believe to be a scam should report the incident to CenterPoint Energy through our online Customer Service form, said Tal Centers, the vice president.
Technicians and contractors will display a company-issued badge when performing work, per the release.
The company also says that it will work with its phone vendors to minimize the risk of scam calls making their way to customers.
Customers are being asked to immediately hang up if the company's name is not displayed on the caller ID.
Depending on the scam, customers who are a victim can take multiple steps to report it.