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Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Energy company sends $200K bills by mistake

CenterPoint is warning its customers of an incorrect email going around claiming they owe thousands of dollars on their bill.

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A viewer who shared a photo of her email said her average bill is $52, but this time her email shows she owes $202,102.16. It may be worth noting that the amount starts with 2021, and ends with 0216. Feb. 16, 2021 was the date of the coldest point during this historic winter storm.

ABC13 reached out to CenterPoint regarding the situation. CenterPoint initially responded that they were looking into the situation.

They added: “Customers do not owe this amount. We’ll update our customers and media once we have a resolution.”

Just two hours later, a company spokesperson told ABC13 the emails were sent in error “due to a recent technical issue caused by the Houston-area power outage.”

They promised to update customers later this afternoon.

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SEE ALSO: Fake energy workers looking to get inside homes without power, HPD chief says

Earlier in the week, Houston police warned residents about people pretending to be CenterPoint Energy workers in order to get into customers’ homes.

“We have reports of scofflaws impersonating [CenterPoint Energy] employees to gain access to homes to victimize occupants,” wrote Chief Art Acevedo. “Restoring outages in our area due to severe weather does not require entering residences.”

On Tuesday, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas warned scammers are also taking to social media to prey on the vulnerable, asking energy customers to text their private account numbers.

ERCOT said it does not need any information from customers affected by the outages to get the power back on.

The video above is from a previous story.

Copyright © 2021 KTRK-TV. All Rights Reserved.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by WCT staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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