(WXYZ) — DTE Energy is laying out what customers can do to prevent falling prey to scammers after they've heard "heart-wrenching" stories from people around the community.
According to a press release, DTE says scammers have called or texted customers using technology that falsely indicates it's coming from DTE, demanding immediate payment. They have also heard of scammers showing up at doors, claiming to be from DTE Energy, and stealing from the home when the owners backs are turned.
DTE says they try to contact customers before making visits, but that it's not always possible. If someone shows up at your door, DTE says you should always request to see a badge. If you are called, ask the person to tell you your account number and current amount due. If it does not match what is on your current bill, call police and DTE to report them. You can always call 800-477-4747.
Here's what DTE wants YOU to know:
· DTE does not ask for unusual forms of payment such as Bitcoin or gift cards
· DTE does not visit homes to collect a late bill or threaten shutoff
· DTE does not use aggressive tactics to get into a customer’s home
· DTE does not request personal or financial information, such as a Social Security number, utility account number or payment information
· DTE does not claim a customer is entitled to a refund or rebate and ask for a bank account or credit card information to make the alleged refund
· DTE does not ask for your personal information for a government program that claims to reduce energy bills
The red flags include someone asking for your DTE account number, bullying and demanding a specific form of payment.
They also advise you do not allow someone to enter your home if:
o Claim to offer a DTE Electric or DTE Gas refund. Our employees never deliver cash refunds or rebates to customers' homes.
o Attempt to collect a bill payment. DTE DOES NOT collect or accept utility bill payments at customers' homes or businesses.
DTE says if any customers feel like their identity has been compromised, they should call their local police, take advantage of free credit reporting, watch for new accounts opened in their name, and report the activity to DTE.