Scammers target Lee County Electric Cooperative clients in Lehigh Acres
Multiple unsettling phone calls, threatening to turn off the power or else!
Over the weekend, Linda Manning found several messages on her home telephone that worried her.
“There was someone coming to shut off the electricity,” Manning said. “I needed to go make a deposit payment to stop that.”
Manning called the number. The man who answered said the money did not go into her account and it likely went into another person’s. He instructed her to buy a MoneyPak Card for $200 to pay what she owed. She did.
Later on, Manning realized someone ripped her off and doubts the person responsible will be held accountable for his actions.
“I’m sure it’s lost money and a learning experience for me,” Manning said. “Albeit not a good one.”
Lee County Electric Cooperative wants all its customers to know the company will never ask for payment over the phone.
“When it doubt always check it out,” said Karen Ryan, public relations for LCEC. “So don’t ever use the number the scam artist is asking you to call back. Always go to the website and get the official phone number from any official utility company.”
LCEC said scammers typically target one area at a time. In this case, the scammer targeted LCEC customers living in Lehigh Acres. A spokesman said it is likely scammers will target other parts of the county in the upcoming weeks.
Manning said she would be skeptical when a person calls her on behalf of a company in the future.
“Second guess, you know, what you’re doing,” Manning said. “Pay attention if any red flags pop up.”