For Immediate Release
BGE Media Line
Customers should be extra vigilant as summer bills reflect higher energy usage
BALTIMORE, MD (August 4, 2022) – As more energy is used in the summer months to make homes and businesses more comfortable, BGE reminds everyone to be aware of scammers who are aggressively targeting customers in new ways.
Scammers take advantage of the increased importance of maintaining energy service during the hot summer months to trick customers into providing personal or financial information and making payments under the pretense of keeping their service active.
Scammers are also attempting to take advantage of the economic impacts of the ongoing pandemic and inflation to pressure families and businesses who may be struggling with past-due balances.
“Scammers are targeting BGE’s customers every day, especially during this time of economic uncertainty and extreme heat,” said Denise Galambos, senior vice president of Customer Operations and Chief Customer Officer for BGE. "We want everyone to know that we will never ask you to pay with a prepaid cash card or cryptocurrency, and that any customer who has questions about their bill or may need assistance with a payment should contact us immediately so that we can help you maintain your energy service.”
Scammers begin their work by preying on the emotions of customers. Common schemes involve scammers' use of technology to replicate a company's phone number through caller ID—also known as "spoofing"—and then threatening to turn off a customer's service unless they make a direct payment with a prepaid cash card or cryptocurrency.
Some scams involve imposters posing as BGE employees to gain entry into a customer's home to steal belongings, with other activities involving scammers sending emails to businesses, requesting that they send bill payments to counterfeit pay sites.
Here are some tips to help identify scams:
BGE will never come to a customer's home or business to:
BGE will never call a customer to:
To identify an actual BGE employee, remember:
If a customer ever questions the legitimacy of the call, hang up and call BGE at 410.685.0123. Customers with an online MyAccount can also confirm their account information anytime online. Any customer who believes he or she has been a target of a scam is urged to contact their local police and call BGE immediately to report the situation.
Tips for commercial customers:
Commercial customers are also advised to protect themselves from potential scam attempts. These offenders impersonate BGE and other trusted organizations through email or other forms of communications to deceive businesses into providing financial information or making an urgent payment.
To help protect their business from scams, employees at local businesses should:
To learn more about preventing scams, customers can visit us online at bge.com for more tips and resources. These resources work and can prevent scammer’s actions from occurring.
Bill-payment assistance to help customers:
Residential customers who are past due on their BGE bill should contact the company as soon as possible. Customers should never wait until they are in crisis to contact BGE—the time is now. To learn more about assistance options customers can call 410.685.0123 or visit www.bge.com/EnergyAssistance for additional information.
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BGE is Maryland's largest natural gas and electric utility, providing safe and reliable energy delivery to more than 1.3 million electric customers and more than 690,000 natural gas customers in central Maryland. The company was founded in 1816 as the nation's first gas utility and remains headquartered in Baltimore City to this day. BGE is a subsidiary of Exelon Corporation (Nasdaq: EXC), the nation's leading energy utility company. Engage with the latest BGE stories on bgenow.com and connect with BGE on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.