Avoiding Utility Scams

Scammers typically use three tactics (phone, in-person, and internet) to target utility customers, there are more than 10 types of known scams, “with new scams emerging almost daily, and scammers might use one, two, or all three tactics on customers for certain types of scams.” The following information details everything you need to know when it comes to utility scams.

BMU and the Bryan City Clerk’s Office will NEVER call for payment.

Here are some tips to keep you safe:

  • Never pay over the phone in response to a call, especially when you’re threatened with a service disconnection if you don’t pay immediately. BMU will never demand payment over the phone. If you’re getting pressured, hang up and call us at 419-633-6020 — this will ensure you’re speaking to a real utility employee.
  • Before shutting off your electricity, communications or water service, BMU will send you one or more disconnection notices in the mail, hang door tags, and give you several bill payment
    options, typically online, automatic bank draft, mail or in person.
  • Utilities don’t accept gift cards and they never require customers to buy prepaid debit cards, like Green Dot or MoneyPak, to pay their bill. Instructions to pay by prepaid debit or wire transfer is a red flag.
  • Don’t trust caller ID, even if it shows the name of your utility company. Scammers know how to “spoof” caller ID to make it read whatever they want. It’s another sneaky part of the scam that fools a lot of people.
  • Delete all suspicious emails that demand or require immediate action to verify personal information.

Read The Fine Print

BMU encourages customers to read the fine print when considering offers from other providers. Please also keep in mind that door-to-door contractors are paid by the number of customers they sign up.  Our community owned communication system does not engage in “bait-and-switch” offers or require contracts. Our rates and services are very transparent and always available online. If you have any questions you can us at 419-633-6100.