Scammers targeting Burnet utility customers by phone

FROM STAFF REPORTS

BURNET — City officials are warning residents about a potential scam involving utility payments.

The Burnet Police Department has received calls regarding a utility bill scam in which a person calls a resident and tells him or her that his or her bill is past due and the city is on the verge of cutting off those services. The caller tells the person the only way to stop this is by going to a store and purchasing a “Green Dot Card.” Then, the resident must provide the card information to the scammer.

The scammer tells the resident this is the only way his or her account can be brought up to date.

A “Green Dot Card” is basically a pre-paid debit card that makes it extremely difficult for law enforcement to track the transaction.

Burnet officials said they never call a resident demanding payment over the phone. Instead, the city sends out past-due notices on the 21st of each month.

Residents should never give out personal banking information to someone they don’t know over the phone, officials said. Citizens can check the status of their utility account either online at www.cityofburnet.com by clicking “Online Services” and using the secure log-in or by calling (512) 756-6093.

Citizens who have received a call or a suspicious notice should call the police department at (512) 756-6404.

editor@thepicayune.com