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We Energies warning of winter scam

Posted at 9:12 PM, Nov 27, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-27 23:15:17-05

We Energies is warning customers about a spike in scam calls during this cold snap. They say more than 70 of its customers were contacted by crooks on Monday alone.

We Energies spokesman Brian Manthey says the customers are told their bill is overdue and that their heat will be turned off, "if they don't get a prepaid debit card from a local Walgreens or Walmart or a store nearby, and if they don't call the scammer back with the number," said Manthey.

Leigh Joost of Milwaukee received the scam call Monday afternoon.

She says a woman with an accent called and told her about an outstanding bill and asked her to call another number to clear it up. Suspecting something didn't seem right, she called the number where a man answered.

"This guy comes on and he says 'hi how are you doing?'" she said. "He was being real friendly, not like someone that is trying to collect money from me."

Suspecting this may be a scam, she replied, "I said to him, 'this is a scam' and I hung up the phone."

We Energies says so far only one person has fallen victim to the scam, but that person is out hundreds of dollars. They remind customers that we are currently in the "Winter Moratorium" and that power won't be shut off from November through April because of the cold weather.

If you get the call, We Energies is asking you to let them know by calling 800-242-9137.