New Bitcoin scam targets electricity customers


Americans are finding themselves targeted by a new Bitcoin scam…

by Manoj Sharma for CNR

Another Bitcoin scam has surfaced in Las Vegas, where power utility customers are threatened to be disconnected unless they immediately pay a demand in Bitcoins.

The scam in question is an old utility payment wheeze. The MO of this particular shakedown is that a user will receive a call from someone pretending to be an employee or representative of a utility company, such as water, power or phone. The rep tells the apparent customer that the account is overdue and the services will be disconnected immediately unless payment is made within 30 minutes (or instantly).

Multiple instances of scammers asking for credit card payments have been seen in the past. However; the rise of cryptos has added a new wrinkle as spammers are now asking for Bitcoin payment.

The latest case of this Bitcoin scam occurred in Las Vegas, Nevada. KTNV reported that customers are getting calls from scammers pretending to be the reps of NV Energy, a local power company.

One of the residents, Jon Ontiveros, almost became a victim. He detailed how scammers kept calling his family to make payment within 30 minutes to avoid disruption of power supply. Jon avoided the scam as he is aware of cryptocurrencies, and quickly smelt a rat.

A similar instance happened in Hawaii and the West Coast. Reps from the supposed power company would call customers and persuade them to make payment in Bitcoins to continue using the services.

As ever, vigilance is recommended. There are no signs yet of these scams coming to the UK.

Image: BigStock

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