WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. - Police are warning local businesses and homeowners of a phone scam involving a faux Con Edison employee calling about a lack of payment.
Customers have recently received calls from someone falsely stating they are from the Con Edison billing department, and their electricity has been scheduled to be turned off due to a lack of payment, according to Tuckahoe Police.
Police said that the caller then instructs the customers to go to a local store to buy enough “Green Dot Money Paks” to cover the amount owed and call back with the serial numbers for the cards, although Con Edison does not accept payment from such cards.
"These callers are not from Con Edison and Con Edison does not authorize payments of electric or gas bills by pre-paid debit cards such as the Green Dot Money Pak," police noted. "While many retail stores accept the Green Dot Money Pak for payment, Con Edison does not."
Con Edison has received calls and reports from hundreds of customers in Westchester who have been contacted by the scammers, who transfer the money from the cards to pre-paid debit card and cashing it at a nearby ATM. Police caution that the scammers have reportedly made it so a Con Edison phone number will show up on the customer's caller ID.
"Never arrange payment or divulge account or personal information, including credit or debit card information over the telephone unless you are certain you are speaking to a Con Edison representative," officials stated. "Be alert if anyone asks you by telephone to arrange for pre-paid debit cards of any kind as payment for your bill, or to send money to an out-of-state address."
Anyone who receives one of these calls or believes they may have been scammed in the past should contact their local police department.
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