Phone Scammers Strike the Local Area Again

A phone scam is currently going around the area this week from people claiming to be Alliant Energy. The scammers claim that a past due amount exists on the account and if it is not paid in its entirety, the utility will shut off service to the home or business.  Alliant Energy does not call on customers and threaten shut off of utilities. Instead goes through a prescribed series of approaches to make sure billing with a customer becomes current.

Meanwhile, the U. S. Marshals Service is warning Iowans about an expected boost in telephone scams in another form during the holiday season. Supervisory Deputy Marshal William Iverson, in the Omaha office, says con artists will claim you’ve missed jury duty or broken some other law. They’ll go the extra mile to make you believe it’s a legitimate call, giving badge numbers and the names of real federal judges.

They’ll also likely “spoof” their phone number so the Caller ID screen makes it appear to be a call from a government agency. They’ll likely offer to let you pay your bogus fine right there, over the phone.

They’d also never ask for bank routing numbers in order to wire money or to purchase a gift card. Iverson says if you get such a call, just hang up.

If there’s a chance you actually did miss jury duty, contact your nearest courthouse directly.