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Xcel Energy warns customers of potential scam

Xcel Energy said in a news release Tuesday that customers should be aware of scammers posing as the company and asking for payment up front to complete transactions. Xcel Energy says customers should contact the company directly at the customer service line, 1-800-895-4999, in order to start new service or conduct business.

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MINNEAPOLIS — Xcel Energy is telling customers to always call the company directly at 1-800-895-4999 when looking to start a new service or conduct business.

In a news release, the company said it’s become aware of a scam in which customers call a fraudulent number found online and then are asked to pay money in advance to complete transactions. The alleged scammers may also collect customer information, including Social Security and credit card numbers.

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The Tribune publishes Records as part of its obligation to inform readers about the business of public institutions and to serve as a keeper of the local historical record. All items are written by Tribune staff members based on information contained in public documents from the state court system and from law enforcement agencies. It is the Tribune’s policy that this column contain a complete record. Requests for items to be withheld will not be granted.
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According to the release, customers may not initially notice they have been scammed because in some cases the scammers also contact Xcel Energy and pose as the customer using their information to start a new service.

The release states that Xcel Energy does not charge customers up front to complete transactions. Any fees associated with new transactions will appear on a customer’s next bill.

Xcel Energy said if a customer is asked to pay in advance to complete a transaction, the customer should hang up and contact the company directly to complete their request and inform the company of the scam.

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Affected customers may also call the company’s business solutions center at 1-800-481-4700, and Xcel encourages them to contact local authorities to file a criminal complaint.

Customers should know the following to avoid being scammed:

  • Be suspicious if a caller requires a single form of payment, such as requiring the use of a prepaid debit card.
  • Never wire money, or provide bank card or Social Security numbers, to an unverified source.
  • Customers should know they will initially be contacted by U.S. mail about past due bills, not over the phone. A disconnection notice is sent in writing before power is actually turned off.
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