GAHANNA — Scammers aren’t taking a holiday break, and that means you need to be on the lookout. More than 400 scam attempts were reported to AEP Ohio last month and many more may have gone unreported.
This week, AEP Ohio joins utility companies across the country in observing “Utility Scam Awareness Week.”
“It’s always important to recognize any attempt to steal your money, but the added distractions of the holidays make it even more important to be vigilant,” said Katie Grayem, AEP Ohio director of customer experience. “Thieves are always looking for new ways to target unsuspecting customers, and they can be very convincing.”
The most common scam involves someone pretending to be an AEP Ohio employee. Scammers target customers over the phone, by email and at their doorstep. They often seek out the most vulnerable, including senior citizens, low-income residents and small business owners during their busiest hours.
How to Spot a Scam
You’re most likely talking to a scammer if the person: Demands immediate payment; Asks for your personal account information; Insists on a prepaid credit card, wire transfer or other specific form of payment; Provides an unfamiliar phone number or asks to meet at an unusual location to make a payment.
How to Stay Safe
If you’re told your account is past due, check your account status online or call (800) 672-2231. The number appears on your bill, too.
Scammers can use computer programs to make it seem like they are calling from an AEP Ohio phone number. Always call the official AEP Ohio customer service number with questions about your account.
Make payments only to authorized AEP Ohio agents or through AEPOhio.com.
Remember that AEP Ohio employees will always show company ID when you ask.
If you’re ever in doubt about someone’s identity, call AEP Ohio at (800) 672-2231.
If you think you’re being targeted by a scammer, call AEP Ohio to report it. Representatives can verify your account status. AEP Ohio tracks scam attempts and works with local, state and federal law enforcement agencies to identify and prosecute scammers.
For more information visit AEPOhio.com/StopScams.
Information provided by AEP Ohio.