Local Entergy customers target of scam - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Local Entergy customers target of scam

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(Source: MGN Online) (Source: MGN Online)
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SOUTHWEST LOUISIANA (KPLC) -

The following is a news release from the Better Business Bureau of Southwest Louisiana:

Scammers are calling residents and impersonating Entergy staff, claiming to be collecting on late bills.

BBB President Carmen Million reports that they have received calls from both consumers and businesses that were targets of this scam.

Consumers indicated that they received a call where the person on the other line identified herself/himself as a representative from the local utility company, Entergy.

The scammer stated that the consumer was late paying their electric bill. The consumer was told that they needed to pay immediately, or utilities would be terminated.

However, instead of accepting payment by credit card or check, the caller wanted consumers to pay by prepaid debit card.

The scammer instructed consumers to obtain a prepaid debit card and call him/her back. Prepaid debit cards are becoming an increasingly popular method of payment for scammers.

Wire transfer services have tightened their security, so crooks have turned to these prepaid cards instead. The cards are difficult to trace, and you do not need photo identification to collect or spend the money.

Be sure you treat a prepaid debit card like cash and remember that transactions cannot be reversed.

Because local gas, water and electric companies do sometimes contact their customers by phone, it can be difficult to tell a scammer from a real agent.

The BBB states if a caller specifically asks you to pay by prepaid debit card, this is a red flag.

Your utility company will accept a check or credit card. Also, if you feel pressured for immediate payment or personal information, hang up the phone and call the customer service number on your utility bill.

This will ensure you are speaking to a real representative. When in doubt, check it out first.

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