“They asked to see my bill, but I was like ‘no, thank you. I don’t need your services,’” Southside neighbor, Penny Matthews said.
Neighbors on Elmira’s Southside say they were paid a visit by people asking to see their NYSEG bill.
They say a man walked one side of the street claiming to be from NYSEG and a woman walked the other side of the street claiming to be from Family Energy.
“But you never know if they’re real or if they’re just people wanting to get your account number,” Matthews said.
NYSEG is warning these people may be looking to see the second page of the bill to access a code that could possibly allow them to change your electric and gas supplier.
“NYSEG never goes door-to-door to discuss this particular issue. When we are out in the field, we would never ask a customer for an account number or a bill or any personal information,” Manager of NYSEG Corporate Communication, Clay Ellis said.
Sometimes other legitimate service employees will go door-to-door asking you to switch over.
“To show us that we were being charged extra for something that NYSEG shouldn’t be charging us for. A surcharge,” Southside neighbor, Michelle Williams said.
But neighbors who have switched that way before, say it’s a bad idea.
“A lady knocked on my door and asked to see my NYSEG bill promising to save money, but we know it’s a scam because we have fallen for it before and never saved money,” Williams said.
One of the best ways to protect you and your property is to post a no soliciting sign. That way if they do come to your doorm, they’re actually breaking the law.
“Ask that individual for photo identification and understand exactly who the person is. Of course, as always, be cautious when sharing any personal information,” Ellis said.
Anyone who goes door-to-door is required by law to have a peddlers or a solicitation permit. That person must be registered with the city or the town where he or she is working. If you’re skeptical about the person knocking at your door, experts say it’s a good idea to ask to see that permit. The Elmira City Clerk says she has not issued a permit to an energy company employee yet this year.