Text message phishing scam targets customers
New scam claims to be sending a refund from BC Hydro via text message
A new school year is also bringing a new attempt from scammers to obtain personal banking information from BC Hydro customers.
We're issuing a warning about a new phishing scam, one that typically comes via text message and has the appearance of an Interac e-transfer.
How the scam works
- BC Hydro customers are being contacted by text message and email with what appears to be a notification from Interac with a link to receive a refund from BC Hydro.
- Customers are told to click on a link to access their account refund by submitting their banking information.
- This message is a scam: it's not from BC Hydro, and it's an attempt to obtain your private banking information.
Reminder: we don't issue e-transfers or send account info via text
Please take the time to spread the word to family and friends that this is a scam.
We don't issue refunds via Interac e-transfer and we won't communicate with you about your account through a text message.
If you're expecting a bill credit from the Wildfire Evacuee Assistance Program, please note that these credits will show up directly on your bill.
If you've signed up for MyHydro, you can see the latest information for your account, including your account balance, by logging in to your account at bchydro.com. You can also give us a call with any questions.
If you receive a fraudulent text or email
Customers are asked to report any fraudulent texts or emails they receive to their local police department and the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1 888 495 8501.
If you're ever unsure about whether a communication from BC Hydro is legitimate, don't click any links or open any files sent to you. Call our customer team at 1 800 BCHYDRO (1 800 224 9376) for clarification.
Earlier phone scam focused on gift cards continues
This most recent fraud attempt appears to have started targeting B.C. residents in the past few days, judging from reports coming in from customers who have received the texts and emails.
Reports also continue of a phone scam BC Hydro initially warned customers of in 2014. Fraudsters posing as BC Hydro employees contact customers by telephone and ask them to purchase a cash gift card to pay for their overdue account and avoid disconnection of their service.
A reminder: we don't collect credit card or bank account information over the telephone and we don't accept payment by cash gift cards. If you receive a suspicious phone call from someone claiming to represent BC Hydro, hang up and call 1 800 BC HYDRO to verify the call.