13 InvestigatesScam Alert


CONTACT 13: Scam targets local small business owners

Posted at 5:55 PM, Jun 24, 2016
and last updated 2018-11-21 17:46:12-05
Thieves are always coming up with sneaky ways to rip you off. In some cases, they simply pick up the phone, and just ask for your money. 
Now, a Contact 13 consumer alert from a local business, recently targeted by scammers. 
"And I stopped him and went; wait, wait, wait. That can't be," says Janet Singleton.
She's mad. She's speaking out about a recent phone call to her small ceramics business.
"Had a bunch of people here in the studio and so I was busy working," says Janet.
The guy on the other end was claiming to work with NV Energy, and Janet's power was going to be shut off in the next 20 to 30 minutes. Janet couldn't believe it.
"Because my electric bills come in, immediately, you know automatically out of my account," says Janet.
Janet says the customer service rep., admitted it was an issue on their end. 
"There's some sort of glitch in our system, and were unable to process those payments," says Janet.
The total amount due: $441. That's nearly 3 times the amount of her regular monthly electric bill. But it was the next part, that really bothered Janet.
"In order to keep your electricity on, you need to go to the nearest convenience store and purchase a prepaid card. We can not process at this time, checks or credit cards," says Janet.
That's when Janet told the caller, she didn't believe him, and was calling NV Energy for herself.
"When you have a business, and you've got customers, and somebody tells you that your electricity is about to be cut off, you panic," says Janet.
Janet says the caller hung up. And when she called NV Energy, they confirmed it's all a scam. So Janet's next call was to Contact 13.
"I'm trying to help get the word out, so people don't fall prey to it," says Janet.
So here's the Contact 13 bottom line. Never pay a caller any amount of money, until you verify what they're telling you. NV Energy tells Contact 13, they'll never call you demanding a payment. 
If you're really behind on your electric bill, NV Energy will send you a 10 day, and a 48-hour notice by U.S. Mail. 
If you've been the recent target of a scam, let us know. 
Contact us at 13investigates@ktnv.com, and we'll see how we can help. 
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