Feb. 19, 2014: Avista is alerting its customers to the latest national scam that is using email to send bogus energy bills. The scam is not specific to the region and is occurring on a national level.
Avista customers have reported receiving the phishing emails. Rather than referencing a specific utility, the emails are generic and ask customers to view their bill by clicking a link in the email and set up automatic payment plans. This is a broad scam with email addresses likely being pulled from external sources.
If you currently receive an electronic bill from Avista and are unsure if an email is legitimate, some quick ways to verify the accuracy of the email are to:
- Check the sender. Your electronic bill will come directly from Avista, not from a generic email address.
- Before clicking on the link to view your bill, hover over the link to be sure that it is directing you back to Avista.
- Lastly, do not ever enter personal payment information if you have not logged into your account securely. Avista requires a secure login to keep your personal information safe.
It is always a good idea if you receive an email from a source you do not know and/or you do not recognize the sender’s email address, to take the following precautions:
Do not open the email which includes malicious links that go to compromised websites hosting malware
Do not respond to the request
Do not click on any links in the email
Do not open any attachments
Do not provide any personal information
Scam attempts occur frequently, so play it safe. Do not provide your confidential information to anyone or fall victim to high pressure tactics for payment. If you are in doubt about an email, contact Avista’s customer service center at (800) 227-9187.
About Avista Utilities
Avista Utilities is involved in the production, transmission and distribution of energy. We provide energy services and electricity to 364,000 customers and natural gas to 321,000 customers in a service territory that covers 30,000 square miles in eastern Washington, northern Idaho and parts of southern and eastern Oregon, with a population of 1.5 million. Avista Utilities is an operating division of Avista Corp. (NYSE: AVA). For more information, please visit www.avistautilities.com.
The Avista logo is a trademark of Avista Corporation.
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