SHEFFIELD, Ala. (WHNT) – Authorities in Colbert County are warning utilities customers about a scam that is circulating.
In the last few weeks, scammers have been calling Sheffield Utilities customers using fear and in one case prizes to try and get cash.
Phone scams are nothing new; they’ve been around for years…preying on the emotions of whoever answers the phone.
But Sheffield Police are seeing scammers take a new approach.
The first incident involved a restaurant and having their electricity shut off due to lack of payment.
“Of course this is a restaurant at lunch time and they stood to lose several thousand dollars, so they hustled to find out what was going on,” said Chief Greg Ray. “Come to find out they were not behind.”
According to Chief Ray, the person on the other end of the phone line wanted the owners to send them a money order or pre-paid debit card to keep the power on.
Two weeks later, another Sheffield Utilities customer received a call from an alleged scammer, but this call had a slightly different twist.
“The lady had been paying her bill on time, and because she was such a good customer,” explained Ray, “she had won a brand new Jeep Cherokee and two-hundred and fifty thousand dollars cash.”
Chief Ray said the woman was given a number to call to claim her prize, but instead picked up the phone and called authorities.
But with neither victim falling for the phone scam, Ray is worried that someone they haven’t heard from has been victimized.