The parent company of the United Illuminating Company (UI), Southern Connecticut Gas (SCG) and Connecticut Natural Gas (CNG) — has received multiple reports of scammers threatening to disconnect gas or electric service unless the customer makes an immediate payment over the phone using a prepaid debit card. While most customers recognize these calls as scams, a small number have been persuaded to make payments.
Caller ID may show the call is coming from the utility. In some cases, the perpetrators seem to have specific knowledge about the customers they’re calling, and may even provide a callback number with a recorded greeting similar to the energy company’s customer service line.
Typically, the caller informs the customer that a crew is on the way to shut off service unless an immediate payment is made. Perpetrators may tell the customer that the company had not received a recent payment or incorrectly processed a payment, so the customer must pay again. The scammer often demands the victim purchase a prepaid debit card (“Green Dot” is a common brand) to make the payment. This is a sure sign of a scam.