Kansas City Power & Light Co. on Wednesday issued a warning about a phone scam involving customers’ utility bills and other personal information.
The scammers have mostly targeted restaurants and small businesses, but the utility said individual customers also need to be on alert.
According to the utility, the perpetrator typically poses as a KCP&L employee who notifies the customer over the phone of a past-due bill and then demands immediate payment to avoid a service disconnection.
If the customer can’t make immediate payment or does not answer the phone, the scammer gives out a return phone number for customers to call back, the utility said. On the call-back, customers are prompted in a recorded message that thanks them for calling KCP&L or a “similar sounding” utility name, the company said. The customer is then directed to make their payment with a live operator.
The phone number is not associated with KCP&L.
Customers who have questions about the legitimacy of a bill, or a phone call or email regarding a utility bill, should refrain from providing any personal or banking information and hang up. Customers should then call KCP&L’s customer care center at 888-471-5275, or 816-471-5275.
To avoid problems, KCP&L urged customers to be suspicious of any email regarding their utility bill, unless online communication with the utility has been requested.
In addition, never give out credit card, debit card, Social Security, ATM or any other bank information to anyone who comes to your home, calls, texts or sends email regarding your billing without verifying that the person is with the utility. Ask to see company identification or call the company’s customer care center.
Steve Rosen: 816-234-4879