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Scammers target businesses including carwashes

May 30, 2014
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CHICAGO — Several businesses have already been hit by a scam targeting ComEd customers with threats of losing their power unless they pay a large bill, according to CBS Chicago

Max Mankiewicz of Udo’s Car Wash, received a call saying there was a glitch in his power bill, which would lead to a $1,788 charge or he would lose service. He was unconvinced by the call, noted the article, and never paid the bill.

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Another local business owner, Dominique Schewevach, wasn’t so lucky, and gave the scammers $1,200. There were numerous details that made the call seem real to her, including the caller having information only ComEd should know, like her last bill amount, and the Caller ID displaying that the call was from ComEd. “Either someone is leaking information from the company or someone has managed to enter the system,” she said.

ComEd noted some ways to tell that this call is a scam, saying that a “utility representatives will never ask a customer to immediately pay a bill over the phone.” Also, a customer will get a letter and automated call about losing service before being called directly by a representative.

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