BURNSVILLE -- The Better Business Bureau of Minnesota and North Dakota warns businesses and consumers that an offer to have President Obama pay their utility bills through a new federal program is a scam.
The bogus offer has been reported nationwide and is now making its way into Minnesota and North Dakota.
"We've been watching this scam closely as it emerged sporadically around the country," said Dana Badgerow, President and CEO of the BBB of Minnesota and North Dakota, in a news release. "Recent reports we've received indicate that it's now here and people need to be aware of the risks."
Consumers have received phone calls, fliers, social media and text messages claiming the President is providing credits or applying payments to utility bills. The scammers claim they need the consumer's Social Security and bank routing numbers.
In return, customers are given a fraudulent bank routing number to pay their utility bills through the automated telephone payment service. The payment service initially 'accepts' the payment but then declines it within a few days when the bank account number is discovered to be fake.
The BBB urges citizens to investigate any officer that sounds too good to be true, by calling the BBB at 800-646-6222 or visiting bbb.org. Never provide your Social Security number, credit or bank information to anyone who calls you, regardless of whom they claim to represent.
If you receive a call from someone claiming to be your utility company and feel pressured for payment or personal information, hang up and call the customer service number on your utility bill.