CON ED SCAM PATROL: WARNS ABOUT ESCO OFFERS AND MORE. Call 1-800-75-CONED to Report them.

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WPCNR THE POWER STORY. From Consolidated Edison Customer News. April 13, 2021:

Con Edison, obviously reacting to the ESCO marketing season that has resulted in an onslaught of mailings and hard sell phone calls promoting inexpensive green energy rates guaranteeing rates that are not true and have “caveats” the telephone salespersons do not tell you about, even when asked, has issued this warning in its Customer News insert newsletter with this month’s bill:

  1. Real Con Edison employees wear a photo ID. They will give you their supervisor’s name and ask you to call 1-800-75-CONED to verify your identity.
  2. Scammers can make it look like Con Edison is calling you on your Caller I.D.
  3. If you ever receive a call asking for payment or other personal information (on your bill, what you pay, for example, a call this reporter has received often) related to your account, hang up and call us: 1-800-75-CONED. We would never demand payment via a prepaid debit card, gift card, bitcoin, Cash App or any digital wallet app like Venmo.
  4. Don’t pay online unless you are certain you’re using Con Edison’s automated payment system. Con Edison payments can only be made through conEd.com and conEd.com/GuestPayment.
  5. We do not charge for the installation of smart meters.
  6. Report scams to your local police department.
  7. Learn more about common scams at conEd.com/ScamAlert.

Some common phone scams are:

Pretend to be from Con Edison.

They may even manipulate your caller ID to display Con Edison’s name.

Threaten to turn off your power or gas within an hour.

Demand immediate payment—often by prepaid debit card.

From this reporter’s personal experience, independent energy companies known as ESCOS, each year attempt to switch Con Ed customers to their own ESCO power supply by offering you guaranteed rates or green rates lower than your present ESCO or if you are still getting both electricity and delivery of it (the Con Ed delivery charge). The ESCOS say their rate is lower, say it is guaranteed and ask you what your current con ed rate is. When you query them about how long the rate is guaranteed, I have had the ESCO sales people hangup. If you call their number, you are essentially accepting a switch. The ESCO mailings are also deceptive, trying to switch you by deceptively telling you to switch to green power, new low guaranteed rate. Do not do that. It switches your electricity supply provider.

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