​​Electricity theft

Electricity theft, also known as electrical theft or diversion, is the illegal practice of stealing electrical power. Electrical theft raises your cost of electricity and also creates the risk of fire and electrocution. Because electricity theft impacts everyone, CenterPoint Energy makes it easy to report suspected electricity theft in Houston.

Report electricity theft 

You can discretely report suspected electrical theft to CenterPoint Energy in two ways:

How Is electricity stolen?

Meter tampering is a common method of electrical theft.  It occurs when violators physically alter the internal mechanism of their electric meters. When successful, illegal tampering causes the meter to underreport the total number of kilowatt-hours actually used.

A second way electricity is stolen is when a person or small business illegally siphons energy from a line. Like meter tampering, this criminal act can lead to fire or fatal electrical shocks. If you suspect any type of electrical theft concerning the Houston electrical grid, you can confidentially report it to CenterPoint Energy.

If you’re looking for information about the theft of copper wiring or other metals, visit electrical wire theft

Facts concerning electricity theft:

  • Electrical theft is the third-largest form of theft in the United States, according to Pepco.
  • Approximately $89 billion in electricity is stolen each year, worldwide, according to Northeast Group, LLC.

Fighting electrical theft

CenterPoint Energy has installed more than 2.4 million Smart Meters across Houston. Smart Meters are designed to send alerts when they’re tampered with. Technology is helpful, but the eyes and ears of our customers remain essential for deterring theft and keeping energy costs low. 

Thieves constantly try finding new ways to avoid getting caught stealing electricity, and our customers play a major role undermining their efforts. You can save money and lives by speaking up if you think electricity theft may be happening.

When you report suspicious activity concerning Houston’s electrical grid, our field operations group will examine data to determine whether further investigation is appropriate. Next, we may proceed with a physical inspection of electrical equipment.

See something? Say something

When you report suspected electricity theft you’re not only doing the right thing, but helping to save both money and lives.

You may report electricity theft to CenterPoint Energy anonymously – although we encourage you to share your contact info with us. It helps our team efficiently examine suspected instances of electrical theft.

Report electricity theft online​ or call 1-877-570-5770.​