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Nicor Gas provides ways for customers to protect themselves during Utility Scam Awareness Week

NAPERVILLE, Ill. – Nov. 19, 2019

We hold ourselves accountable to the customers and communities we serve first and foremost. That’s why Nicor Gas is joining more than 130 U.S. and Canadian electric, water and natural gas utilities to protect customers against potential scams.

The Utilities United Against Scams consortium has designated Nov. 17-23 as Utility Scam Awareness Week. The weeklong campaign is designed to expose the tactics scammers use to steal money from customers and provide advice on how they can protect themselves. 

Although there are several scam tactics, one of the most common involves unsolicited phone calls to customers by an individual who falsely claims to be a company representative. The scammer warns that the utility will disconnect the customer’s natural gas service if a payment is not made within a short timeframe.

Other common tactics Utilities United Against Scams warns against:

  • Door Knocking Imposter – Door-to-door imposters pose as utility workers to gain entry or access into unsuspecting victims’ homes.
  • Overpayment Tactic – Scammers call claiming you have overpaid your utility bill and you need to provide personal bank account information or a credit card number to facilitate a refund.
  • Power Restoration Charge – Scammers call offering to restore power more quickly for a fee in the aftermath of severe weather that may have caused widespread power outages.
  • Vacate Your Home – Scammers claim there is a need to replace metering or other equipment and you must leave your home for 72 hours.
  • Facebook Charity Scam – Social media posts are telling customers that a charity will pay for their utility bills if the customer first makes a partial payment by money transfer. This new scam is still under investigation by authorities, and it is unclear if the scammers are seeking money, personally identifiable information, or both.

Customers who suspect or experience fraud or feel threatened during contact with an individual posing as a company representative, should contact local authorities, and then the customer care center phone number listed on their local utility bill.

Follow Nicor Gas on social media @Nicor_Gas and join in the conversation #StopScams.

About Nicor Gas
Nicor Gas is one of four natural gas distribution companies of Southern Company Gas, a wholly owned subsidiary of Southern Company (NYSE: SO). Nicor Gas serves more than 2.2 million customers in a service territory that encompasses most of the northern third of Illinois, excluding the city of Chicago. For more information, visit nicorgas.com. 

About Southern Company Gas
Southern Company Gas is a wholly owned subsidiary of Atlanta-based Southern Company (NYSE:SO), America’s premier energy company. Southern Company Gas serves approximately 4.2 million natural gas utility customers through its regulated distribution companies in four states and approximately 700,000 retail customers through its companies that market natural gas. Other nonutility businesses include investments in interstate pipelines, asset management for natural gas wholesale customers and ownership and operation of natural gas storage facilities. For more information, visitsoutherncompanygas.com.

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Media Contact:
Jennifer Golz
o: 630.388.3737 | c: 630.388.3737 | jgolz@southernco.com

About Nicor Gas
Nicor Gas is one of four natural gas distribution companies of Southern Company Gas, a wholly owned subsidiary of Southern Company (NYSE: SO). Nicor Gas serves more than 2.2 million customers in a service territory that encompasses most of the northern third of Illinois, excluding the city of Chicago. For more information, visit www.nicorgas.com.

About Southern Company Gas
Southern Company Gas is a wholly owned subsidiary of Atlanta-based Southern Company (NYSE:SO), America’s premier energy company.  Southern Company Gas serves approximately 4.2 million natural gas utility customers through its regulated distribution companies in four states with 774,000 retail customers through its companies that market natural gas and related home services. Other nonutility businesses include investments in interstate pipelines, asset management for natural gas wholesale customers and ownership and operation of natural gas storage facilities. For more information, visit Southern Company Gas at southerncompanygas.com

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Media Contact:
Jennifer Golz
o: 630.388.3737  |  c: 331.222.8716 |  jgolz@southernco.com