Recently, we have noticed an increase in phone scammers claiming to be PNM and threatening customers with disconnection or meter removal. Both residential and business customers have been targeted.
Customers are told to purchase a prepaid gift card through PayPal or at a retailer such as CVS, Walgreens, or other convenient store, and then to call back with the card number, which the scammer then redeems. Scammers are getting better at fooling people and some customers fall prey to the threat of immediate disconnection and the intimidating tone. We have reports that scammers may even be able to manipulate the number that appears on your caller ID to fool you.
Spotting a Scammer
On occasion, PNM does make live outgoing calls to customers to collect a past-due payment.
- Customers are asked for a payment, but we never ask customers to purchase prepaid gift cards or PayPal money cards.
- Check your most recent bill. If there is no disconnect notice, it might be a scam.
If you suspect a call may not be genuine:
What not to do:
- Never provide your PNM account information to someone who has contacted you. A PNM customer service representative will be able to provide you with your PNM account number and past-due amount, which will match your bill.
- Do not automatically buy a prepaid card or paypal card to provide payment without first calling PNM at 1-888-DIAL PNM (888-342-5766) to verify your account status. You should always initiate the call and only by calling the number on your actual bill.
What to do:
- Tell the caller you will call him or her back, then hang up and call PNM at 1-888-DIAL PNM (888-342-5766). We can tell you if a PNM representative contacted you, and whether you are past due. We will use the information you provide to alert other customers.
- Check your bill: If you are in danger of disconnection, this will be written in bold on the front page.
- Even if you are late with your bill, there are several ways to quickly and safely pay without giving the caller personal or financial information.
- PNM does not disconnect power on the weekend or on a holiday. Don't fall for this intimidation tactic.
- PNM is working the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) because these fraudsters are using VoIP telecommunication phone lines to scam customers out of money, which is a federal crime. PNM and the FBI are asking New Mexico customers for help by reporting the details of any scammers that may have contacted them to the FBI so the agency can track and analyze them against similar scams and suspects. Reports can be made at www.ic3.gov.
- Call the police. Only the police can track down and arrest a criminal, but they need your help and cooperation to do that. You can also file a complaint with the FTC and the New Mexico Attorney General's office.
If You Need to Make a Payment Quickly
- Call PNM 1-888-DIAL PNM (888-342-5766) and follow the prompts for making a payment 24/7.
- Make a payment online
Spread the word. Tell your friends, family and coworkers about the phone scammers. We want to help keep you safe and secure.