ENGLEWOOD, Fla. - A popular scam is targeting businesses in southwest Florida.
A caller claiming to work for Florida Power and Light tells the victim they need to pay up before the electricity is shut off.
Tim and Marie Bronson run an ice cream shop, hair salon and real estate business in Englewood. They got their call last week.
"He said it was a courtesy call, that he was giving us an hour and a half, and our power was going to be shut off because we were two months behind in paying our bill," Marie said. "It's serious. and then you start to panic."
Tim is the one who pays the bills, so Marie handed him the phone.
Tim said the 941 area code was convincing.
"He said they updated their system and some things arent updated and they wanted to make sure it was accurate," Tim said.
When Tim offered to give his credit card number, the caller said he wanted the money in cash or on a prepaid card.
"I got shook up and ran home real quick," Tim said.
He checked his bank statements, while Marie called FPL.
"They assured me that I had a zero balance," she said.
FPL tells WINK News that it is aware of the scam, and that the scam is similar to several others around the nation. The utility company said it would never ask a customer for information over the phone, unless the customer initiates the call.