Middle Tennessee Electric Membership Corporation (MTEMC) officials have issued a warning to members regarding a number of scam phone calls where fraudulent callers are posing as MTEMC employees, contacting members and claiming their account is past due and subject to cutoff.
"We have received a number of calls this weekend from members who are concerned about scam calls that are affecting them," MTEMC Communications Coordinator Josh Clendenen said Saturday. "The callers have been posing as co-op employees, telling the member they are sending a truck to cut their power off and instructing the member to get a prepaid credit or debit card to pay their bill over the phone."
In the past, the scammers would call members during the week, often during high bill times.
"This time is different because they're calling on the weekend and at a time where we are not having a lot of high bill calls," Clendenen said. "Our offices are closed on the weekend, so we are not making any of these calls members are reporting."
Clendenen said that if a member is unsure whether a caller is from MTEMC, they should hang up and contact the cooperative. In the event a member's account is past due, they would receive an automated phone call notifying them of the past due nature of their account. MTEMC employees will never ask for their personal account or payment information unless the member initiates the call. In addition, MTEMC will never show up at a member's home or business and ask to collect payment. If someone claiming to be an MTEMC employee asks for payment at your home or business, contact the authorities immediately.
Bill payment methods at MTEMC include bank draft, online bill pay, pay by phone at 1-877-777-9020, pay by mail and pay in-person during regular business hours.
"If a member is subject to one of these calls, we encourage them to not give out any information, hang up and notify the authorities," Clendenen said. "If you would like to know the status of your account, you can log on to your account through our website or call our member services line where they will give you the most up-to-date account information."