Big Country Electric Cooperative received notice from a member who was recently called by someone from a toll-free number who fraudulently identified themselves as a Big Country EC employee. The caller claimed that the member’s account was past due and would be disconnected if not paid immediately. This is a scam that has occurred nationwide.
We urge you to be vigilant and protective of your personal information: Do not give out personal information, be sure that you use only a secure internet connection, and close out apps and websites completely once you have completed business transactions.
Please know that any time BCEC contacts members:
- All our office phone numbers are local, and a local number will display on your caller ID when BCEC contacts you. Some of our employees may call from cellphones when working in the field, but this will generally be limited to when they are doing work near you and will not be related to billing for your BCEC account.
- BCEC employees will identify themselves by name as employees of Big Country Electric Cooperative, not as “your electric company.” For example, “This is _______ with Big Country Electric Co-op.”
- BCEC adheres to the most stringent data security practices in order to protect our members’ information. We will NOT ask you for personal information such as bank account or Social Security numbers, PINs, birthdates or any other sensitive data. We will only ask for limited identifying information for verification purposes on a call that is initiated by the member. Our billing employees can only see very limited personal information.
- We will NOT ask you to wire money or to use or send a prepaid money card.
- Most calls to members are made during business hours. Some automated payment reminder calls may occur after-hours but will originate from BCEC’s local number.
- Our payment reminder calls do not demand immediate payment but state that we have an important message about the account and ask you to contact the cooperative by a specific time and date.
- We do not schedule disconnects for delinquent accounts outside of regular business hours.
If any contact claiming to be from BCEC seems suspicious or inappropriate, or if you would like to verify the validity of any communications from BCEC, please contact our offices at (325) 776-2244.
If you have been the victim of such a scam, please contact local law enforcement and BCEC. Big Country EC will also alert law enforcement to any instances of misrepresentation or fraud.