November 17, 2021

Benton PUD Participates in the Sixth Annual Utility Scam Awareness Day

Benton PUD wants you to be prepared to avoid being the victim of a scam
Benton PUD joins Utilities United Against Scams (UUAS) this week to support International Fraud Awareness Week and recognize the sixth annual Utility Scam Awareness Day, which will take place on Wednesday, November 17. Utility Scam Awareness Day is focused on educating customers and exposing the tactics used by scammers. This year’s theme is ‘End the Call. End the Scam.’
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, utilities have seen an increase in reported scammers who are contacting customers seeking payments and personal and financial information to avoid service interruptions. As a reminder, Benton PUD will never ask for payments using a pre-paid debit card, gift card, cryptocurrencies, or third-party digital payment mobile applications, and we will provide multiple notices and work to assist customers with payment plan options before disconnecting service.
“It’s perfectly acceptable for the customer to hang up the phone. The scammer’s initial goal is to pressure their targets and convince them that they work for the utility,” said UUAS Executive Director Monica Martinez. “Scammers are extremely sophisticated in their tactics, and, by simply ending the call, you can end their scam. If you are unsure, you can always call back the utility by dialing the number found on your bill or on their website, and they will provide you with the correct information.”
“Benton PUD does not contact customers by telephone and ask for payment to avoid disconnection when an account is past due, said Christie McAloon, Manager of Customer Service.  “If customers are unsure if a call is actually from Benton PUD, they should hang up and contact us at (509) 582-2175.”
Visit for information and tips on how customers can protect themselves from impostor utility scams. Follow along with UUAS on Twitter and Facebook, and join the conversation by using #StopScams.