HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - Huntsville Utilities customers are once again the target of a phone scam they've seen time and time again.
Although it's nothing new, WHNT News 19 is taking action to help you avoid becoming a victim.
The scam starts with phone calls to customers, saying they didn't pay their bills, and demanding they pay right away. It's the same fraudulent call the community has already experienced.
Joe Gehrdes represents H-U. He says,"customers will get a call from someone claiming to be a utility representative, demanding payment immediately or within some pretty unreasonable time period. If you don't wire money, they threaten to disconnect your account."
Gehrdes says Huntsville Utilities doesn't do business like that. If there is a problem with your bill, he says a representative will call. However, they won't demand money and they won't ask for you to pay in 10 minutes!
If a customer service agent calls you and you think it's a scam, Gehrdes says always ask.
"Even if they think it might be us, call us up and verify that that's the case because that's not the way we handle payment."
The new peg to these scams is the short time period the caller gives to pay them money you don't owe.
Calls started pouring in Wednesday, which is why it is a great time to remind customers what to look for this time around. As of Thursday morning, a dozen customers called in to report this scam. Gehdres says the scam they're seeing is also very broad.
"They are not discriminating between residential and business accounts. And the numbers generally do not originate from the 256 area code."
If you see a call coming from another area code, where the called is claiming to work for Huntsville Utilities, Gehdres says it's a scammer.
"If it doesn't sound right, just call us up. We will verify for you," he says.
Hopefully the calls stop, but if that's too much to ask for, officials want you to at least be mindful and know what to look for so you aren't the next victim during this round of Huntsville Utility scams.
To contact Huntsville Utilities, click here.