The Macon Water Authority

790 Second Street • Macon, GA 31202-0108 • (478) 464-5600

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Customers beware of Holiday utility scams

Dec 7, 2016 by Chris Wood, Ph.D.

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Macon Water Authority customers are encouraged to be on alert for potential utility scams this holiday season, such as criminal activity by impersonators coming to the doors of customers or contacted them on the phone.

The Macon Water Authority (MWA) is advising our customers of a variety of scams targeting utility customers during the holiday season.

Caution #1: Be wary of imposters entering your home

The MWA has very strict guidelines regarding how we contact our customers, and we ask that you exercise caution regarding any suspicious activity. The MWA will never request unsolicited entry into a residence or business for any reason. For instances that do require access into a residence or business, the MWA always provides advance notification of the day and time of the visit to the Owner/Resident.

Caution #2: Beware of imposters seeking your financial information

Also, the MWA will never call and demand payment for disconnected water or sewer services and require our customers to make immediate payment with a credit or prepaid card; and we do not make outbound calls asking for a customer’s credit card, social security number or account information.

The MWA offers the following tips to avoid being a victim of a scam:

  • If someone calls you, do not provide information to them about any utility account or personal information over the telephone.
  • Do not open your door to someone you do not recognize or are not sure of the person’s identity. Do not allow anyone to enter your home claiming to collect a past-due bill, make an inspection, or to sell utility products such as a, water filter, meter or other equipment. MWA employees do not engage in door-to-door sales, do not collect a past-due bill in person, and do not deliver refunds.
  • MWA Employees on duty drive marked MWA logo vehicles. Make sure our vehicle is within sight, and verify that you had an appointment and/or were expecting a service visit.
  • Ask to see photo identification (I.D.) through a window. MWA employees carry photo I.D. badges and will be happy to show you their I.D. You can then call us (478-464-5600) to verify their identification.
  • If a property owner calls the MWA Customer Service Center and asks for an investigation into high water use or other water service-related issue, the utility may send an employee to a home or business. The utility also may send an employee to investigate high water use or a possible meter issue, or to replace a meter, without a customer-initiated service request. Again, these employees will readily show I.D. If there is a concern, please call the MWA (478-464-5600) to confirm there is work being done in your service area.
  • Please share these reminders with your family members, friends, and neighbors.

If you have any doubts about the legitimacy of any visit, call, or email from someone claiming to be from MWA, especially one which requires entry into either your residence or business or requests a payment of services, you should call us directly at 478-464-5600, or email our customer service inquiry inbox at cstinq@maconwater.org; you should consider contacting local law enforcement agency as well.

Being well informed, careful and cautious can help you detect suspicious behavior and ultimately help you to avoid these types of utility scams.

Media contact:
Lisa Golphin
Senior Executive Assistant of Strategic Planning
Phone: 478-464-5623
Email: lgolphin@maconwater.org

Tagged: macon water authority, mwa, utility scams, holiday utility scams, safety and security

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