CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WJZY) – Duke Energy warned customers in North Carolina and South Carolina of scammers who might call them impersonating representatives and threaten to cut off customers’ power before or during Sunday’s winter storm unless customers make a payment for late bills or other charges.

The power company will never make such calls to customers, never threaten to cut off customers’ power immediately, never seek immediate payment, and never calls customers to request personal information.

“Unfortunately, scammers are always looking for a new opportunity, including a winter storm, to steal customers’ money and information. They prey on customers who might be more vulnerable to such scams during stressful situations, like a major storm,” said Jason Hollifield, Duke Energy Carolinas storm director. “Our goal is to protect our customers from such devious schemes.”

Below are tips for customers to avoid scams:

  • If it’s a recorded voice, often referred to as a “robocall,” be extra cautious.
  • Do not provide any personal information.
  • Duke Energy’s actual recorded calls to customers are informative only. The company’s calls never threaten to cut off power and never request personal information. 
  • If a caller – recorded or live – specifically asks you to pay using a prepaid debit card, that’s a red flag. Prepaid debit cards are like cash and the transactions cannot be reversed. 
  • If the caller pressures you to make an immediate payment of any type – or provide personal information of any kind, such as a bank account number or social security number – hang up the phone.