PHILLIPSBURG, NJ (Warren County) – Police are warning Phillipsburg residents to be wary of a phone scam where the caller claims to be from Jersey Central Power & Light (JCP&L).
According to police, the scam call is typically from a person claiming to be from JCP&L who makes reference to their account being delinquent. Further payment is being requested in prepaid credit cards and/or gift cards. In some instances, the caller stated that the customer must go to Middletown, NJ to pay their overdue bill or their electric service will be shut off. The scammers are “spoofing” their phone number to make it appear as though it came from a JCP&L customer service line.
“Be advised that the person is not a JCP&L representative and residents should not give over their information (account numbers, social security numbers, bank account information, etc.),” police said.
First Energy Corporation provides the following facts on JCP&L protocol:
- If your account is past due, you will receive a written notice of your account status, with instructions on how to avoid disconnection of service.
- While our representatives may call a customer whose bill is in arrears in order to remind them that a payment is due, the representative would explain how a payment can be made using our established payment options. They will not demand payment over the phone, in person, or at a particular physical location.
- Our utilities do not accept prepaid debit cards or wire transfers as payment, and our representatives will not demand your bank information or credit card number over the phone.
Tips for those who might be targeted by the phone scam:
- If you receive a suspicious call, hang up immediately.
- Be aware that scammers often use calling ID spoofing software to misrepresent the source of the phone call, or provide you with a fake “verification” phone number. If you would like to verify your account status, always call our customer service department using the numbers on our website, or log into your account on our website.
- If you believe you have been a victim of this scam, please contact your local police department, or your state attorney general’s office, and report telephone scams to the Federal Trade Commission’s website.
For more information on other scams, visit the FirstEnergy’s website.