Utility bill scam reported by Loveland customers
Contact: Tom Hacker, 962-2302
Loveland Water and Power customers have reported receiving automated phone calls warning them of utility shut-offs unless overdue account balances are settled.
Perpetrators of the apparent attempt to defraud customers have “masked” the caller ID number to make it appear that the call is coming from Platte River Power Authority. PRPA is the electric power producer and wholesaler owned by Loveland, Fort Collins, Longmont and Estes Park.
The automated call warns recipients that avoiding a service interruption requires they call another phone number within 30 minutes to make payment arrangements.
The reports received by PRPA and the City of Loveland’s utility billing office so far do not indicate that any customers have been defrauded in the scam. The Loveland Police Department has been provided with information, including the phone number that call recipients are advised to use.
The reports underscore the dangers posed nationwide by scam artists who prey on utility customers with threats of service shut-offs unless payments are provided to cover alleged account delinquencies.
City of Loveland Utility Billing Manager Nancy Salazar said the City mails notices twice to customers whose accounts are delinquent before considering service interruption. Utility billing employees may contact a customer by phone prior to shut-off. Customers who question the validity of any service-related call should hang up and call the number listed on their bills, 970-962-2111.
The billing office accepts major credit and debit cards (Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express) by phone and in person at the billing office. Customers with any questions about utility bills should call the billing office at the number listed above.