Scammers can be found anywhere, any time and can easily target those who are not aware of them. The scams below have been used to try to target Adams Electric members and other local utility customers. In order to help protect our members, the following is a list of the known scams that have occurred and ways to identify them.
We encourage you to help make friends and family aware of risks and common scams, and revisit this site periodically to check for updates on new scam activity. Members who suspect they are being (or may have been) scammed should report the crime to the local authorities and Adams Electric.
- Fake Phone Calls
- Cyber Scams
- False Employees
- Equipment or Repair Fees
- Steps to Take to Approach Issue
In the phone version of this scam, the caller will pose as an electric company employee who will threaten to shut off a members’ power if an immediate payment is not made. This phone call should raise suspicion, especially if the caller asks for payment to be made through a Green Dot/Money Pak card or a money transfer.
Here are the facts:
- If you receive a suspicious call, hang up immediately.
- Adams Electric will never call asking for personal information. If unsure of a caller’s true identity, hang up and call 1-800-726-2324 to verify that the call truly came from Adams Electric.
- Be aware of callers asking members to provide credit card or other financial account information and personally identifiable information. The sole purpose of these calls and messages is to convince unwary victims to reveal their account numbers and passwords so that thieves can steal money from their bank accounts or make large purchases with their credit cards.
- Some scammers use Caller ID to falsely identify the source of a phone call. The call back number provided could even have the same greeting and message tone you are used to hearing. In order to be confident that you are speaking with the right representatives at Adams Electric, be sure to always dial the numbers listed on the co-op’s website or other publications provided by Adams Electric. If you wish to have your number blocked from solicitors and telemarketing calls, sign up on Pennsylvania's Do Not Call List.
- It is the co-op’s policy not to contact its members to solicit personal information. When account payment, collections or disconnect services do become necessary, the co-op will only ask to verify the last four digits of the social security number of an established member.
Be cyber smart and protect your computer from viruses and scams. Adams Electric will only email you if you have signed up for our eBlasts. Adams will not contact its members about billing through email.
Be aware of phishing scams that pose as real websites. These may seem to be authentic, but pay close attention to the link of the website. Scamming websites will take you to a misdirected destination and potentially harm your computer.
Delete any suspicious emails. Make sure not to open them as they are likely to be spam and can cause viruses to your computer.
Delete all emails asking you for money. These are more than likely scams.
If someone approaches your house claiming to be from Adams Electric, they should have an Adams Electric logo on their clothing or hat. They should likely also have the co-op logo on their car, and be carrying an Adams Electric badge/photo ID. Ask to see their ID! If you are still unsure about their identity, call Adams Electric at 1-800-726-2324 to confirm. Never let anyone who you are questioning into your home under any circumstance. Do not allow anyone claiming to be a utility employee into your home unless you scheduled an appointment and the employee has provided proper identification.
Adams Electric cares about the safety of its members; therefore, we do not want imposters of the co-op to threaten the safety and personal identity of our members. If for any reason an Adams Electric worker would need to enter your house, an appointment should be scheduled in advance.
Some scams market themselves by claiming to save you money with gadgets of some sort, promising they will cut back your electricity cost. One such gadget is a no-cost, non-patented generator that claims to give off “free electricity.”
While this concept of “free electricity” sounds wonderful, chances are, this one is a fraud. According to the Philadelphia Association for Critical Thinking (PhACT), these inventions violate the basic laws of physics and cannot work. This generator claims to give off free energy by finding its source of power from magnets; however, according to the law of physics, no device can generate electricity without input from another source, bringing into questioning the reliability of this product.
Repair fees are also another way scammers try to get money. After a power outage, some individuals may pose as an employee of the co-op and request an upfront payment for the repair of a downed wire. If this were to occur, it is a scam, as Adams Electric employees would never ask for an upfront payment, as well as they have a specific plan of action to follow when a power outage does occur. When power interruptions happen, crews work as fast, but safely, as possible to go about restoring electricity. They assess the order of fixing power lines, by looking first at which affected areas supply electricity to the most people. If you are in a more remote location, you can expect to be without power longer in some cases than those in more populated areas.
If any of these situations happen to you, or if your suspicions point to the possibility of the threat of a scam, take the following measures, and keep in mind these reminders.
- If receiving a phone call that threatens to shut off your power if your bill is not immediately paid, hang up and call the co-op to check your account.
- Do not let anyone in your house if you are unsure of their identity.
- Call the following number to confirm a workers identity or question a billing issue, 1-800-726-2324.
- If you receive a suspicious email, do not click links or open attachments if you are not sure of the sender, and do not respond to email from senders you don't know.
- If you are interested in additional suggestions for safe and reliable ways to lower your bill and save energy, here are some tips.