Southern California Gas Co. is reminded customers to be on alert for potential scams targeting utility customers during the COVID-19 outbreak.
The company said one common scam involves telling customers they must pay their gas bill immediately or their natural gas service will be disconnected. SoCalGas does not call customers seeking payment, the agency said.
Additionally, on March 13, SoCalGas announced it had suspended service disconnections for customers who are struggling to pay their bills until further notice. This decision was made to support the health, safety and wellness of our customers during this crisis, the agency said.
SoCalGas is providing the following tips on how to recognize and respond to these scams:
- Caller ID spoofing with calls that appear to be coming from SoCalGas. The caller may try to sell products, collect personal information, or collect payment on your gas bill. Please note that SoCalGas will never ask for payment through the phone.
- Phishing emails, texts and social media posts with malicious attachments asking you to send personal information or money to another entity.
- Utility imposters appearing at your place of residence or business demanding payment. How to protect yourself: Never provide your personal information such as social security numbers, credit card numbers, bank account numbers, or share names and passwords with anyone claiming to be a utility representative.
- Always ask to see a SoCalGas photo ID badge before letting someone inside your home. All SoCalGas employees on company business are required to carry a badge.
- Customers are encouraged to verify the employee’s uniform and identification. Most of our authorized employees will always be in a uniform with our company logo, carry an official employee badge, and drive a company car. SoCalGas employees will always be happy to wait while the customer confirms their identity.
Customers can always check the status of their SoCalGas account or pay their latest bill by logging on to My Account. Customers who have questions about their experience with a SoCalGas representative should immediately contact SoCalGas customer service at 800-427-2200.
Customer service representatives are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Visit socalgas.com/scam-alert for additional tips and information about scams.
“We understand this is a challenging time for us all. Rest assured, your natural gas service will be there for your community,” the utility said in a news release. “We will continue to make safety and emergency service appointments, including reports of suspected natural gas leaks, carbon monoxide checks, gas meter turn-ons, natural gas outage and pilot re-lights. SoCalGas will also continue work needed to safely and reliably maintain our infrastructure so we can continue to provide you with safe and essential energy services.”