KCP&L wants to warn all customers that the utility is seeing an escalated rate of utility scammers. KCP&L has seen an increase in reports of phone scams involving customers’ utility bills and other personal information, including both residential and business customers.
With the phone scam, the caller is often a live person posing as a KCP&L employee who notifies the customer of a past due bill and demands immediate payment to avoid service disconnection. Scammers also can manipulate the caller ID to look like KCP&L’s actual call center number. In some instances, the caller requests that the customer purchase a money gram to pay their bill. If the customer is unable to make an immediate payment or does not answer, the caller gives out a return phone number for customers to call back, however, an important distinction is that the callback number the scammer’s provide is not the KCP&L number. When calling, customers are often prompted by a convincing but fraudulent recording to press two to make their payment with a live person. This phone number is not associated with KCP&L.
“The reality is that scammers continue to have a negative effect on our communities and businesses,” said Steven Glenn, KCP&L’s manager of revenue protection. “By being proactive with our customers and sharing information with them and our neighboring utilities, we hope to stay out in front of the newer scams and help minimize the effects that they are having on our customers.”
Due to valued customer reports, KCP&L has worked in conjunction with United Utilities Against Scams to quickly shutdown many of these fraudulent numbers and frustrate these scams. In such cases, it is extremely valuable for the reporting customer to obtain and provide the scammer’s requested callback number.
If customers ever have questions about the legitimacy of a bill, phone call or email regarding their utility bill, they should refrain from providing any personal or banking information, hang up and contact the KCP&L Customer Contact Center at (888) 471-5275 or (816) 471-5275.
Here are some other important safety tips to keep in mind.
- Never give credit card, debit card, Social Security, ATM, checking or savings account numbers to anyone who comes to your home, calls, text and/or sends an email requesting this information in respect to your utility bill, without also verifying that person is with KCP&L by either asking to see company identification or by calling KCP&L’s Customer Contact Center.
- Be suspicious if you receive an email regarding your utility bill if you have not requested online communications from KCP&L.
- For customers using KCP&L’s online bill pay system, always make online payments directly through kcpl.com.
- Never provide personal information via email or click any suspicious links.
If you feel you have been a victim of this scam, please work with your local law enforcement agency to report the crime. For more information, visit www.kcpl.com/scamalert.