In the scam, a caller pretends to be an employee of the electric company, telling the victim his account is delinquent and payments in the form of prepaid credit cards is required immediately. The call is a scam, police warn, and are urging residents to report calls to the police. JCP&L confirmed they've received inquiries about the calls as well.
Three weeks ago, Brick Police warned of multiple incidents of the "JCP&L scam" call in the township. Lakewood police issued its own warning this week, saying the same scenario is happening there.
Report from Lakewood Police:
On noon January 6, Lakewood Police Officer Mark Zrebiec took a report from an employee at local supermarket located on Clifton Avenue.
The employee reported that they received a call from a unknown male, who identified himself as a representative from JCP&L, indicating that the business was delinquent on their electric bill.
The suspect advised the owner that unless he made an immediate $500 payment by use of a Green Dot Moneypak his electric service would be terminated.
In good faith, the owner complied with the request. After receiving a second call for additional funds, he believed he was the victim of a scam and contacted the police department to report the incident.
The Lakewood Police Department has taken several similar reports in the past. Often times these scam artists will prey on individuals, particularly the elderly, by using the "delinquent utility bill" ruse or even going so far as to represent themselves as a law enforcement "official" seeking bail money for a "relative."Brick police urged residents to be aware of the scam and to report suspicious phone calls.
Residents are reminded to never give any of their personal information over the phone or the internet.
If you are contacted by anyone requesting this type of information, please try to record their telephone number, and verify as best as you can.
If you have any concerns at all, please contact the Brick Township Police Department at 732-262-1100.