Kentucky American Water wants to remind customers to be wary of individuals posing as water company employees trying to gain access to customers’ homes, obtain their personal information or scam them out of money.
“We want our customers to know that Kentucky American Water employees always carry company-issued photo ID badges and will never come to a customer’s home demanding access in order to test water or collect payment from the customer to avoid water service shut off,” said Kevin Rogers, vice president of operations. “Our employees come to your home to test water only if you request it, and in-person payments are only allowed in our customer lobbies or at authorized payment centers listed on our website.”
The Federal Trade Commission reported that consumers lost a total of $328 million to imposter scams in 2017—more than any other type of fraud. Imposter scams were also the third-most common consumer complaint, after identity theft and debt collection.
It is always better to err on the side of safety and confirm someone’s identity before allowing them inside your home. Kentucky American Water recommends customers take the following steps to ensure their safety against utility imposters:
Stop and think
Are you expecting anyone to come to your home? Kentucky American Water does not typically send a service worker to your home unannounced. They will have an appointment before showing up. An exception would be if there were a water main break in the neighborhood. Water company distribution employees will knock on customers’ doors to advise customers of water service interruptions due to water main breaks or repairs, but they do not request entry to a customer’s home.
Kentucky American Water employees have company-issued photo ID cards to verify their employment. However, if you cannot see an ID card without opening your door, you are encouraged to contact the company’s customer service center at 1-800-678-6301 for verification.
Kentucky American Water employees drive company vehicles with a Kentucky American Water logo printed on the side and have a uniform, jacket or hat with the company logo. For a service-related visit requested by the customer, the vehicle would be visible to the customer and parked outside their home.
Kentucky American Water employees do not request entry to your home after dark unless it is an emergency call requested by the customer or an appointment for service work that has been scheduled in advance by the customer.
Kentucky American Water employees will NEVER come to a customer’s home demanding payment of an unpaid bill to avoid water shut off. Field employees are not allowed to accept payments from customers.
If in doubt, you should always contact Kentucky American Water for employee verification or contact the local police department. You should always have the person wait outside behind a locked door while this is completed. A legitimate worker won’t mind waiting while you verify their employment information.
Kentucky American Water advises customers never to let a person into their homes if they are doubtful of that person’s identity. It is always much better to be safe than sorry, and if someone attempts a utility scam, it’s important to report them immediately to law-enforcement authorities.
Note: Other local utility companies have similar policies. NEVER let someone who claims to be a utility employee in your home without seeing a company ID. When in doubt, call the utility company to confirm the employees identity. If the person insists on entering your home or apartment, shut the door and call 9-1-1.