Navigating Fraud in a Digital Era

In an era of advanced communication and technology, being vigilant against fraud is more crucial than ever. At Hydro Ottawa, your safety and security are our priority. We're not just here to provide electricity; we're committed to equipping you with the knowledge necessary to identify and thwart potential scams related to your account. 

Fraudulent activities have evolved into sophisticated and elaborate schemes. As technology advances, so do the tactics employed by scammers. Artificial intelligence (AI), a transformative force in various sectors, is now influencing the fraud landscape. Scammers leverage AI to create highly sophisticated and convincing messages, mimicking official communications with unprecedented accuracy. 

This intersection of technology and deception makes it increasingly challenging to distinguish between authentic communications and scam activities. All of us need to be more vigilant.

Scammers exploit various channels, from traditional phone calls (a medium now susceptible to voice cloning), to modern text messages and even in-person visits, all aimed at deceiving customers. Recognizing the signs and understanding how Hydro Ottawa communicates with you are your first lines of defense.

With the launch of our new Outage Alerts on December 15, 2023, please note that legitimate SMS/text alerts come from PWROUT (797688), and valid outage-related emails are sent from [email protected].

Fraud awareness in the digital era


Here’s what to look for when it comes to possible scams about your hydro account:

  • Offers of refunds for overpayment or entitlements to rewards
  • Immediate disconnection threats, especially during Ontario's Winter Disconnection Ban
  • Demands for immediate payment  
  • Demands for payment by bitcoin or any digital currency
  • Requests to meet Hydro Ottawa personnel at random locations to receive payment 
  • Texts or emails with suspicious links
  • Typos or out of place punctuation
  • Blurry logos
  • 1-800 numbers (Hydro Ottawa does not have one)

How to know if a communication is from Hydro Ottawa 

If you find yourself on the receiving end of a message that sets off your internal alarm bells, here's a strategic course of action to safeguard your security. First and foremost, resist the urge to click any links or dial the numbers provided, as these could be gateways to potential scams. Maintain the safety of your personal information; refrain from sharing sensitive details such as credit card numbers, account information, or your address. Instead, take a proactive step by contacting Hydro Ottawa directly at 613-738-6400 to authenticate the legitimacy of the message. Your peace of mind is paramount, and our team is here to assist you in navigating the intricacies of digital communication securely.

Beyond the digital realm, should you find a “Hydro Ottawa representative” at your doorstep, rest assured they always carry corporate identification and will arrive in an official Hydro Ottawa vehicle with all the appropriate Hydro Ottawa branding. When in doubt, ask to see identification, including a business and ID card with the person's name and company.

Reporting Fraud

If you suspect a scam, report it to the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501 or online. Additionally, contact the Ottawa Police Service at 613-236-1222 ext. 5433.

Related Links

Fraud Awareness webpage


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