Xcel customers report scams

December 24, 2013 • Local News

Roswell-area Xcel Energy customers appear to be a target of scammers who have recently tricked several businesses and residents into providing credit card information over the phone.

The customers are told that if they don’t give up personal financial information, their power will be shut off, said Xcel Energy’s spokesman Wes Reeves.

“Scammers tend to focus on this particular season because everyone’s distracted and they’re worried,” Reeves said.

Xcel Energy received several reports last week. Some 10 [auth] potential scams are under investigation, Reeves said.

Carlsbad, Artesia, Clovis and areas in Texas have also had activity.

“We have internal security tracking this and we’re working with law enforcement, when possible, to track these people down,” Reeves said. “We want to get the word out.”

Xcel customers are reminded to be aware that they can always stop a conversation and call 1-800-895-4999 if they receive a suspicious phone call, Reeves said.

“Only give out financial information over the phone when you’ve initiated the call directly to us,” he said. “No matter what shape these scams take, they are generally similar. Someone is asking you to provide personal or financial information.”

Customers who have received the calls are reporting that the scammer is asking them to provide the financial information over the phone to help clear up a past-due amount or face disruption in service.

The scammer also may provide an “800” number to the customer to call for verification, but it is not a legitimate Xcel Energy number, Reeves said.

Xcel customers can call the company at any time to check the status of their accounts.

“We should have several phone numbers on record, so we know who we’re talking to. We have several layers to go through, to prove you’re a customer,” Reeves said. “It all boils down to, just call and verify.”

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