NYSEG AND RG&E URGE CUSTOMERS TO BEWARE OF BILL-PAYMENT SCAMS
Rochester, NY – NYSEG and RG&E, subsidiaries of Iberdrola USA, continue to learn of fraudulent activities where customers are contacted – by email, phone or in person – and asked to pay current or past due charges. Any “payments” then end up with scammers. Utility customers can be a convenient target for these scammers because unlike retail business customers, most everyone is a customer of an energy company and pays utility bills.
NYSEG and RG&E urge customers to take the following precautions to avoid falling victim to a scam:
• Always type the NYSEG or RG&E Web address when making an online payment; do not rely on email links. At nyseg.com and rge.com, customers can check account balances and any past-due amounts.
• When making a payment by phone, always confirm the NYSEG or RG&E phone numbers. Customers should not make payments by phone to anyone who has contacted them or asked them to dial a number other than a NYSEG or RG&E number.
• Don’t trust links in emails when paying NYSEG or RG&E by credit card – go directly to nyseg.com or rge.com to complete credit card transactions.
• If paying by mail, the addresses are: NYSEG, P.O. Box 11745, Newark, NJ 07101-4745; RG&E, P.O. Box 11747, Newark, NJ 07101-4747.
• NYSEG and RG&E bills may be paid at an authorized pay agent, at a Walmart location or at a company walk-in office.
• If paying using an online payment service (for example, through a bank), always follow the payment service’s instructions to ensure account security.
• Never provide Social Security numbers, credit card numbers or bank information to anyone requesting it (over the phone or in person) unless the customer has initiated the contact and feels confident that the transaction is legitimate.
• NYSEG and RG&E will never ask customers to purchase a debit card to make a payment.
• To confirm the identity of any NYSEG or RG&E employee: ask for a photo ID card (if in person) or ask for their employee number. Then contact NYSEG (800.572.1111) or RG&E (800.743.2110) to verify the individual’s identity and the nature of their business. NYSEG and RG&E employees are happy to comply with an identity confirmation request.
It is also important to note:
• NYSEG and RG&E will not call customers for payment if an account is in good standing.
• Customers who need to make an urgent payment should do so by calling NYSEG directly at 800.600.2275 to ensure that their account is properly credited. RG&E customers should call 1.800.743.2110.
• Customers who have any questions about a call they have received for an overdue payment are likewise urged to contact NYSEG at 800.572.1111 ; RG&E at 800.743.2110.
To avoid scams entirely, and remove the worry of a missed payment, NYSEG and RG&E customers may want to consider enrolling in our AutoPay service, where each month’s payment will be automatically deducted from a designated account. More information about AutoPay is available at nyseg.com or rge.com.
If customers believe they have been scammed, they should immediately contact the Federal Trade Commission (http://www.ftc.gov/) and their local police.