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Tue January 28, 2014
DTE Energy Warns of Scams Targeting Small Businesses
DTE Energy is warning their customers about a popular scam targeting small businesses.
The scam involves the victim being contacted by someone claiming to be a DTE employee. The imposter tells the victim they will have their power shut off unless they pay back a large sum of money supposedly owed to DTE.
DTE spokesman Scott Simons says the utility is working with local law enforcement to put an end to these scams and urges customers to call 1-800-477-4747 if they suspect a scam or to discuss any billing issues.
So far, no cases have been reported in Washtenaw County.
Debit Card Payment Scam:
A new telephone scam involves impostors calling utility customers threatening to shut off the power unless they obtain and pay their bill using a Green Dot or other prepaid debit card. A number of DTE Energy customers have been victimized by this very scam.
The impostors typically target small- and medium-sized businesses. Restaurants are often targeted. Once the business owner provides the number on the debit card, the electronic funds are transferred to other debit cards – all of which are untraceable.
Be aware that DTE Energy does not:
- endorse or require a prepaid debit card for payment
- impose unrealistic deadlines for payment nor threaten to shut-off power within a period of hours
- collect payment at customers’ homes or businesses
- ask for Social Security numbers, bank account or credit card information by phone