If you get a call from someone who claims to be with your utility company, you may want to be on your guard.
A new telephone scam is making its way across the states, in which thieves try to trick you into giving out personal information for a special federal assistance program that is available to pay your utility bills.
However, the problem is that no such program exists, and thousands of Americans have fallen victim to identity theft as a result.
"Anytime any of our customers receive a phone call from anyone claiming to be with the utility company, they can always ask for an employee ID number. Folks should also, if they feel like they're being talked into a scam, they certainly can call our offices at (210) 353-2222," said CPS Energy spokesman Albert Cantu.
Victims are being given phony bank account and routing numbers, which they are then told to use when paying their bills online.
However, CPS Energy employees never ask for your personal information, except for when you are applying for services.
"CPS Energy employees will never ask our customers to give them their personal information, such as their banking information like routing numbers or social security numbers over the phone for any kind of payment. We don't do that," said Cantu.
While certain states are seeing several cases, CPS Energy has only had one reported case so far.
If you feel like you may have fallen victim to this new scam, you're advised to contact your local law enforcement agency as soon as possible.