SVEC Warns of Payment Scams

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Shenandoah Valley Electric Cooperative Press Release

MT. CRAWFORD – A Shenandoah Valley Electric Cooperative (SVEC) member recently lost a substantial amount of money as a result of several calls from a Green Dot Visa card scammer. In the past, although not in this circumstance, the scammers have been able to manipulate their phone number so that it appeared the call originated from a legitimate SVEC phone number. The Cooperative wants to make its members aware of this form of fraud, called “spoofing,” which has added another dimension to the scam.

In this case, the scammer called the member stating that they were an employee of the Cooperative, and that the member needed to pay the delinquent amount owed on their SVEC account immediately by purchasing a Green Dot Visa card.

“First and foremost, we want our members to know that no representative of the Cooperative will ever mention a specific credit card or payment method, and our employees will only communicate about potential termination of electric service with members through a mailed notification, not through a phone call asking the member to pay for their service by credit card or other means,” SVEC President & CEO Myron Rummel said. “Unfortunately, a member of Shenandoah Valley Electric Cooperative has fallen victim to this crime. The local authorities have been notified and will follow up as necessary. We want our members to be aware that correspondence of this nature will not be generated by the Cooperative.”

Rummel suggested that if members have any questions about their account, they can call their local office for more information. “Furthermore, if one of our members does receive a call like this, we suggest that you contact our office to verify your account status and contact law enforcement immediately,” he said.

In Augusta County, the numbers are: 941­0011 Ntelos, 515­0011 Shentel, and 213­0022 Verizon; in Frederick County, 450­0111; in Highland County, 468­0011; in Page County, 743­1100; in Rockingham County, 434­2200; in Shenandoah County, 477­1077, in Warren County, 635­1110; and in the city of Winchester, 450­0111.

Chartered in 1936, SVEC serves approximately 90,000 meters in the counties of Augusta, Clarke, Frederick, Highland, Page, Rockingham, Shenandoah, and Warren and the city of Winchester in Virginia. Shenandoah Valley Electric Cooperative was the first electric cooperative chartered in Virginia.