MidAmerican Energy received several reports of scammers targeting Oskaloosa customers over the phone today (Jan. 26). Anyone can be a target for a scammer, at any time of year, so it’s important to know exactly what to do to protect yourself.
Scammers typically call customers and demand immediate payment, often within minutes. They may ask you to pay with a prepaid (Green Dot) debit card. This is a scam. If you’re behind on your bill, you’ll receive several notifications; disconnection is a last resort, not a first step in the process. MidAmerican Energy accepts many different forms of payment, so a specific payment method is never required.
If you receive a suspicious call, hang up and call local police and your energy provider to report the scam and check the status of your account. Customers can check their balance online using My Account at www.midamericanenergy.com or by calling MidAmerican Energy at 888-427-5632, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Here are some steps you can follow to stay safe from scammers:
- Never give out personal information such as credit card or account numbers. Utilities will not ask for this information over the phone.
- Beware of any caller who asks you to pay with a prepaid debit card or gift card. MidAmerican Energy does not accept this type of payment.
- Ask for proper identification from anyone who approaches you claiming to be from a service provider. Call the service provider directly to verify the purpose for the visit. Use the number published on your monthly bill or the company’s website.
For more information, visit www.midamericanenergy.com/scams. The Consumer Protection Division of the Iowa Attorney General’s office has also set up a hotline with more information on the scam at 515-725-5387.