Friday, February 10, 2012

Yikes! Fake PEPCO scammers going around the neighborhood

Just saw this on WAMU's website via the Columbia Heights listserve: apparently people impersonating PEPCO workers are going around the neighborhood trying to scam people. They either seem to be trying to get your account number and personal info, or they pose as bill collectors. A few people have given them money. One lady on the Columbia Heights listserve had this interaction:
Yep. I had a very personable guy come to my door on Fairmont St. Ran the script described below [in the WAMU article]. I told him to leave me printed material and I'd get back to him if I wanted his services. He said that wasn't the way this offer worked. We went back and forth for a few minutes. I finally told him I didn't want whatever he was offering and he got snippy that I would refuse "money sitting on the table." I told him that if it's too good to be true then it's probably not true and shut the door.
 Apparently similar incidents have happened elsewhere in the region too.

A PEPCO spokesman tells WAMU that people should be wary:
Anderson advises people never to give out account numbers because Pepco already has it. In addition, he says the utility does not make a practice of popping up on doorsteps unannounced."Ninety percent of the time, Pepco works outside of your home and when we are dealing with the smart meters and installation, then we may knock on your door," he says. "But even before that, if we have to come into your home, we're going to contact you and let you know we will be in your neighborhood at a predetermined time."
Anyone else experience this? Pretty strange and brazen. 


  1. I have had these people at my door too. However, I have also had other power companies come door to door trying to get me to switch service providers. You can't be a very good company if you have to send people door to door. Two firms came on the same night..

  2. They came to my house. It was a black male with a beard and he had a black female working the other side of the street. The guy was personable and not too pushy.

    I snapped a photo of his ID badge which I was suspicious of since it didn't look very much like him. I immediately called the police to check them out because I thought initially that they were casing houses to see who was home.

    I called the Park Road substation in ParkView which was one block away and they told me that they no longer serviced anywhere south of Park Rd. (which is ridiculous, wouldn't you want a station in the middle of a service area and not on the edge??) I called the station on V street as instructed and then they told me to call 911 which I did. I don't believe a police officer ever showed up. Should I show them the photo? They sadly didn't seem to care much when I called.

  3. I had this guy come around this evening to our door. He was well dressed with a log "Energy Savings" on his T-shirt and said he was from Pepco and Pepco was offering to upgrade the energy savings device with a $80 credit and wanted me to fill up the for. The form looked authentic with Pepco logo and needed name, address, phone no. He said someone will come to install the device later. I am not sure if I did the right thing in giving this information or if this was a fraud. Could not contact pepco to verify this though we tried a few times.

  4. We've been getting people coming to our door, and at least one phone call about a way to lower our meter reading by as much as 8%. They say the name of their company very quickly, it sounds like Alesis, or Alexis. When pressed, they say they are working with Pepco. When I asked what company the caller worked for, she said Pepco. I said, "Oh, Pepco." "Yes, that's what I said in the beginning." Which, she didn't. it was the "Alesis Energy company", or something like that.

    She was asking for a ten digit number on my bill that would provide the savings. the only ten digit number on my bill is my account number.

    The savings are supposed to be for two months. I asked what happens after two months. She started to say something that "Alexis..." I cut her off, saying that was the name of the company she said in the beginning of the call. She then hung up.

    Maybe I blew the 8% savings, but my rule is if you call me asking for information, I want to know EXACTLY who I am talking to.


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