Fake Caller ID in utility shut-off scam cost Troy woman $700 via Zelle

The Caller ID on her phone indicated that she was talking with someone from DTE Energy.

The power company claimed she owed $1,900 and if she didn’t pay her service would be cut off in late April.

The number on the ID was 800-477-4747 — the real phone number for the utility. The caller on the line seemed willing to work with her. When the Troy woman said she couldn’t pay it all at once, the caller agreed to accept $700 to keep the service on.

The Troy woman panicked and paid $700 via the mobile wallet Zelle, according to the police report, before she realized that the whole thing was nothing but a scam.

Fake Caller ID can trick many

The $700 loss is one more reminder that one can’t be too careful when it comes to Caller ID — and it’s another reminder that scammers are impersonating utility companies once again. Oddly enough, they’re asking you to pay by money transfer apps, like Zelle.

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