CAMDEN, N.J., (CBS) — Officials in Camden County, New Jersey are working with Atlantic City Electric advising residential and commercial customers to take precautions when someone claiming to represent a utility contacts them either in person or by telephone.

“Scammers are targeting residential and commercial customers in our region with the Green Dot MoneyPak scam,” said Freeholder Scot McCray, liaison to the Camden County Department of Public Safety.  “Scammers are telling customers that their electric bill is delinquent and will be shut off for non-payment unless the customer purchases a Green Dot MoneyPak.”

Camden County officials say victims are given instructions to call a scammer telephone number with their credit card account number and pin.  Once the scammer obtains the card’s identifying information, officials say the value is then downloaded and stolen.  These transactions are untraceable.

Many companies, including Atlantic City Electric, will contact customers in person or via phone for various reasons. If someone claims to represent Atlantic City Electric, officials say it’s important that individuals take precautions to verify that the person calling is affiliated with Atlantic City Electric, especially if that person is requesting an immediate monetary payment.

When addressing past due accounts, Atlantic City Electric never endorses a specific form of payment. Instead, officials say, multiple payment options are always given to the customer.

“Always ask for official photo identification from anyone who is representing a utility company,” said McCray.  “If they cannot produce proper identification, call your utility company or the police.”

If customers have any doubt about the validity of a person’s claim to represent Atlantic City Electric, officials say they should call the company immediately at 1-800-642-3780.

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