A warning has been issued by Florida Attorney General Pat Bondi, about a widespread scam going around that involves individuals posing as Florida Utility workers in order to fraudulently obtain prepaid debit and credit card information.
The scammers are calling customers, requesting credit card or prepaid debit card information, and threatening the power will be shut off if the information is not provided by the customer. Fraudulent purchases are then made by the scammers using the information obtained by the victims. Some of the victims do not expect fraud as multiple scammers have used caller ID spoofing so it appears as if the call is genuine.
Florida residents can protect themselves by following these tips:
- Never provide credit or debit card information over the phone in response to a call you may receive.
- Keep in mind that utility companies will not call a customer requesting personal information such as credit card numbers, nor will they ever require payments to be made with a prepaid debit card. Also, utility company employees who may show up to a customers door always carry Identification badges and will never ask for money.
- Hang up the phone immediately and call your utility company at a number you know to be official if you receive such a call.
If you feel you have been a victim, you can report the suspected scam to your appropriate utility provider:
Florida Power & Light Company customers should call 800-226-3545
Duke Energy Florida, Inc. customers should call 800-700-8744
Gulf Power Company customers should call 800-225-5797
Tampa Electric Company customers should call in Hillsborough County 813-223-0800, in Polk County 863-299-0800, and other counties 888-223-0800.