OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — The Omaha Public Power District (OPPD) is reporting an increase in scam reports. 80 of them were reported just today!
The scammers pose as utility workers and tell customers that they need to pay up or service will be disconnected while others tell people that they overpaid and banking information is needed to issue a refund. Some even ask people to purchase prepaid cards at nearby stores to submit payment.
OPPD said, "None of these people demanding payments or financial information work for the utility. The utility never cold calls customers demanding payment. And it does not accept payment in the form of pre-paid debit cards."
OPPD provided the following tips:
- Never give personal or financial information to a stranger during an unsolicited phone call.
- If such a person should appear unannounced at one’s door, claiming to work for the utility, do not allow them inside. Always ask for identification or verification. OPPD employees always carry identification. Failure to produce identification is a tip-off to the customer that something is wrong.
- Be suspicious of any emails you receive regarding your utility bill if you have not opted in to online communications from OPPD.
- Never provide personal information via email, and do not click on suspicious links.
- Do not respond to text messages seeking personal information or utility bill payments. Do not click on links within such messages.
- Never turn off security systems for any reason if a stranger asks. Any customer who receives such a request should call law enforcement immediately.
If you have questions about payments or your account and live in Omaha, you should contact OPPD directly at 402-536-4131. If you live outside of Omaha, dial 877-536-4131.