IDT Energy Scamming Spreads Past New York City

IDT Energy, which specializes in going door to door and lying to customers in order to get sales, has expanded its reach past NYC and is now conning the good citizens in Albany, NY, according to this reader Peter’s letter:

The woman was friendly and nice and my wife didn’t distrust her, essentially, because she was a friendly/nice young woman. What was funny was that the woman convinced my wife that IDT had purchased National Grid, and was therefore now our energy provider. She indicated to my wife that the result of this merger was a monopoly, and because of associated regulations, we would begin saving money on our utility bill in the form of refunded state taxes (???). She asked for a copy of our most recent utility, and showed my wife where it stated this. My wife then signed the IDT forms stating that we had voluntarily switched to IDT….

Nope, IDT Energy has not bought National Grid. You got conned.

(Photo: Meghann Marco)

Fortunately I was able to easily cancel the agreement under the 3-day cancellation period, and to IDT’s credit, they were very easy to deal with over the phone, but this all seems a little slimy in the same sense as the ConEd concerns.

However they are training these IDT reps, it must be really good. My wife was sure that the young woman believed that everything that she was saying was on the up-and-up.

It’s true, if you find yourself snookered into a deal with IDT Energy, you can call them up and cancel. Or you can even call up your original energy provider and get the changeover request blocked.

We would also recommend filing a complaint with your public utilities commission against IDT’s false advertising practices. Only by amassing reports will any type of regulatory action spring to life.

P.S. IDT Energy, we hate you. — BEN POPKEN


Edit Your Comment

  1. snazz says:

    while IDT may use scammy techniques to get to you to sign up. they arent shady when it comes to cancelling. my roommate signed us up a few months ago, and when i called to cancel the next day they didnt give me a hard time. in fact the sales associate didnt even attempt to get me to stay, she processed my cancellation and i was never actually switched over.

    Peter: i would first call your current supplier and tell them to block your account from being switched over. then i would call IDT and have them cancel your subscription request. i had no problems doing either.

  2. timmus says:

    How is this IDT company still in business? Why haven’t the other utility companies sued IDT into oblivion over the fraudulent loss of revenue? Does the NY Attorney General care?

  3. timmus says:

    (also a related talk page on Wikipedia regarding Consumerist and IDT)

  4. Ben Popken says:

    @timmus: “The Consumerist: Good enough for Wikipedia!”

  5. The Bigger Unit says:

    It is truly mind-blowing that these guys still exist under the name IDT. I can understand them busting up and reforming under another name…but they haven’t even had the need to do that thanks to inaction from the government. To quote Beano Cook: “It’s unbelievable!”

  6. BritBoy says:

    Nice you cancelled within the 3-day period.
    Surely their contract would be unenforceable anyway due to the gross lies and misrepresentation of the situation ?

  7. velocipenguin says:

    An IDT salesman showed up at my apartment (a few miles north of Albany) back in March. He said he was there on behalf of the electric company to offer me an opportunity to save money. I told him I wasn’t interested and slammed the door.

  8. Andamom says:

    IDT came to our door a few weeks ago. I was surprised to see these relatively young people going door to door in our building –but they explained that they were contractors for ConEd (our electric company). They showed a badge as well –but were very unprofessional. After asking to see our bills for both electric and gas, this one girl started spouting off about savings and such and circling random things on our bill. I grew uncomfortable and asked them to leave. Thereafter, we researched the company on the web.

    Because they were still knocking on doors in our building, I chased them down and requested they leave the building immediately because I knew who they were. It was a nasty, uncomfortable interchange — but I felt compelled to get my neighbors to understand that this was a bait and switch operation that was geared to defraud. Thus far, I have not see them around again…

  9. Sam Lee C. says:

    How do I cancel IDT?
    Their phone recording isn’t audible
    and the “submit” button on their contact page doesn’t work.
    The email link is “broken” as well.