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Police warn of fake utility company phone calls in St. Charles

(ST. CHARLES) People posing as utility company representatives and demanding immediate bill payments are targeting business owners in west suburban St. Charles, police warned Wednesday.

Police recently received a report from a business owner who stated somebody posing as a representative from a St. Charles electric utility contacted him to advise his electric bill was overdue, according to a statement from the St. Charles Police Department.

The caller, a male using the name “Nathan,” attempted to swindle the business owner out of $800 by telling him he was behind on his electric bill, police said. “Nathan” asked for credit card payment over the phone, and provided a reference number in an attempt to legitimize the scam.

The business owner did not fall for the scam because his caller ID showed a Virginia area code, police said.

This was the second time a St. Charles business owner reported such an incident within the last week, police said. Different variations of the scam have threatened electric shut off and demanded payment via Green Dot Money Paks and PayPal.

Police said if the city were to contact a customer it would always be from a 630 area code. The St. Charles electric utility does not contact customers via the phone to make payments and does not utilize credit card billing by phone.

Customers can contact the city’s Utility Billing Department with questions on the status of an account during normal business hours at (630) 377-4426.