Scammers continue to target SDG&E customers

Nationwide scam continues  

San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) is reminding customers to be aware of an ongoing pay-by-phone scam targeting energy company customers throughout America.

Business and residential customers have reported receiving calls from individuals misrepresenting themselves as SDG&E employees, demanding immediate payment with the threat of service shutoffs.

Scammers often are able to obtain information like addresses and phone numbers through simple internet searches, making it difficult to recognize a call as fake. SDG&E wants to arm our customers with knowledge and tips that will help them recognize and avoid falling victim to the scam.

How the scam works

The con artists operating this scheme have developed clever tactics to convince customers of their authenticity.

In some instances, scammers use technology to “spoof” caller ID, so that a call displays as coming from “San Diego Gas & Electric,” regardless of its actual source. The criminals also use the threat of service disconnection as a scare tactic to urge customers to take immediate action.

After warning a customer they are in jeopardy of immediate loss of service, scammers instruct customers to purchase prepaid debit cards, and then direct them to call another phone number to provide the card information, which allows the thieves to remove the cash value.

Spotting a scammer

Although scammers can be convincing, there are some telltale signs and tips that can help customers recognize a call as potentially fraudulent:

  • SDG&E always provides past-due notices in writing before service disconnections for non-payment. Even if you are aware of a past-due balance on your account, do not provide any payment information over the phone unless you have initiated the call.
  • SDG&E will never proactively call a customer for credit card or other financial information.
  • If you receive a call that makes you at all suspicious or uncomfortable, hang up and call SDG&E on our main customer service line at 800-411-7343. Customers can also enroll in My Account to instantly and securely verify account balances.
  • SDG&E customer service agents are trained to work with customers to arrange for a payment plan or other payment process and cannot authorize a shut-off without proper written notification. We will never call and demand immediate payment or financial information.

SDG&E asks customers who suspect they were the target of a scam attempt or have been victim to the fraud report the incident to local law enforcement. SDG&E investigates all reported scams in an effort to protect our customers. 

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