How to spot a utility scam by phone, email and in person

Learn how to spot a utility scam by phone, email and in person.

Scammers target utility customers every day — especially around the holidays. If you pay a utility bill, you are a target, so it’s important to understand utility scam tactics so you can protect yourself. These scams occur by phone, email and in-person. If you are ever in doubt, call us directly at (602) 236-8888.

Here are four common tactics scammers use to target utility customers:

1. Calling to threaten power disconnection within an hour

Scammers will often threaten to turn off your power unless payment is made — generally in an hour. Often, the caller ID will even say they’re calling from SRP. This is a utility scam; do not pay! You can see your latest account information in My Account or the SRP Power App, and you can always call us directly to confirm. Before your power is disconnected, SRP will always send you one or more notices by mail or email.

2. Demanding immediate payment with a prepaid card

The scammer will ask for immediate payment with a prepaid card like MoneyPak or Vanilla or cryptocurrency such as bitcoin. They will often ask you to go to a nearby retail store to buy this card and provide it over the phone, but do not comply! SRP will never ask you to make an immediate payment with a prepaid card or bitcoin.

Our post “5 secure ways to pay your bill” is your guide to safely making your payments to SRP.

3. Showing up at your home and requesting access

If someone claiming to be from SRP shows up at your home and you are not expecting them, this is likely a utility scam. Keep your door locked and call us at (602) 236-8888 to verify the person’s identity. We do not request payment in person, and we never conduct door-to-door sales. SRP employees also wear company uniforms and have a photo ID badge. They will identify themselves and the purpose of their visit and will be driving a company vehicle that has the SRP name and logo on the side.

4. Phishing for your personal data via email

Scammers send phishing emails to try to get sensitive data such as usernames, passwords, financial information and credit card details. These emails may appear like they are from SRP, but there are a few ways to tell if they are not. If you receive an email that you think my be a scam, be sure to look at the sender address and look for typos. If you fear an email might be an attempt to phish your data, don’t click any of the links in it! You can see your latest account information in My Account or the SRP Power App, and you can always call us directly to confirm.

If you suspect a scam, call us immediately at (602) 236-8888.

When in doubt, always remember that we are available 24/7, including on holidays. Don’t hesitate to call if you receive a suspicious call, email or visit to your home.

Nicole

Nicole

Nicole is on SRP's integrated marketing communications team, specializing in digital strategy. She has called Arizona home since 2013 and currently resides in Mesa with her husband, Michael, and their three rescued pets. In her free time, she enjoys off-roading, camping and generally exploring the Southwest.

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