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Creative scammers targeting EWEB customers

(File/SBG photo)

EUGENE, Ore. -- The Eugene Water & Electric Board says it routinely receives reports about various scam attempts to rip off customers.

The most recent target of scammers appears to be small businesses, who are told over the phone or in-person that their power will be turned off unless they make a payment within 30 minutes, the utility reports.

"The scammers are creating a sense of urgency and threatening to disconnect power within an hour or so if payment is not made," EWEB explained in a news release. "EWEB never makes such arrangements with customers who are past due."

In the latest rip-off attempt, the scammers were able to “spoof” EWEB’s main phone number on the customer’s caller ID, and had apparently replicated the utility’s phone greeting message. One small business even reported a visit from a scammer in a “look alike” EWEB truck.

If a customer has any doubt about the authenticity of a call or visit, especially if they have not received a past due notice, they should immediately call EWEB's customer service line at (541) 685-7000.

Report scams attempts to the Oregon Attorney General's office by calling the consumer hotline at 877-877-9392 (Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.) or by emailing help@oregonconsumer.gov.

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