RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Scammers pretending to work for Dominion Energy are calling people to tell them they have a bill past due and they must pay it immediately.
In the middle of the summer, the last thing you want is your power to go out and have no air conditioning. Someone may feel a desperation to keep the house cool if they are threatened to have their electricity shut off.
The Better Business Bureau warns you — don’t fall for the call.
Janet Awosina got a voicemail on Saturday morning that left her confused.
“It said disconnection order is on for the next 30 minutes. To make a payment and prevent disconnection, call 1-800-677-8149,” Awosina said.
It was an automated message from Dominion Energy saying she was late on her bill. Thinking it sounded legitimate, she called the number and eventually got to a real person.
“At first it wasn’t a live person but then it gets you to a live person. Just like if you call Dominion, it gives you an automated then gives you a live person. It sounded very authentic when I did it,” Awosina said.
But then the red flags began to surface.
She was told her bill was $300, which was about $125 higher than her normal bill.
BBB said Dominion Energy will never pressure you to pay immediately or force a debit transfer.
“Do you want to pay with debit card or checking? He didn’t give me a credit option,” she said. “I said, I think this is a scam. He said, ‘I don’t care if you think it is a scam, just call the number back.’ Then he disconnected.”
Awosina said she is glad she caught the fake number before she had paid the bill but is afraid that people like her mother may not end up so lucky if they got the call.
“The only number that Virginia Dominion has is 1-866. No 1-800 number, no 804 number. None of that,” Awosina said. “I just want people to know this exists.”
Dominion Energy only sends paper bills to your mail and will not call you to pressure you to pay. If you have issues, contact the customer service line (1-866-366-4357) immediately.