PNM warns of spike in phone scams as summer nears

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Just like the weather, scammers are warming up as summer nears and PNM is warning customers of a spike in phone scams.

PNM says they’ve received more than 103 scam reports, mostly in the Albuquerque metro, since January 2023.

They say scammers often add a false PNM caller ID or false 505 prefix to their phone number to get you to answer and think PNM is legitimately calling you.

Once on the phone, the scammer reportedly says they’re with PNM, claims you’re behind on your bill, then threatens to disconnect your electricity unless you pay up within an hour, with either a prepaid card or an electronic banking transfer.

Scammers reportedly demand between $200-500 for residential customers and more than $1,000 for business customers.

PNM says these scams often spike in the summer when electricity is used more often to cool off the house. Reports indicate customers fall victim to this out of fear and often overlook red flags.

These are some red flags you can watch for:

  • The scammer has a caller ID that reads PNM or will add a 505-prefix attempting to localize the number
  • They may know your name and address and will claim you are past due on your PNM bill
  • They will demand you pay over the phone to prevent power from being disconnected
  • They only take payment over the phone via a prepaid card, gift card, or electronic transfer
  • Scammers will claim a technician is on their way to disconnect your power and demand you pay within a short window of time, usually 1-hour to avoid disconnection
  • If the caller is calling at odd hours, during the weekend or on a holiday, it’s most certainly a scam