Fernandina Beach Police Department
September 30, 2021
BE CAUTIOUS OF SCAMS. Scam artists are calling people posing as utility company representatives or as government officials. These scammers pressure people to obtain a “Green Dot” or similar prepaid debit card and use it to make an immediate payment of a fictitious utility bill or fine. These cards must be loaded with a cash-value before use and a transaction is very difficult to trace.
Here are some tips to help avoid being a victim of a scam:
Be suspicious of callers who demand immediate payment for any reason. Legitimate utility companies or government agencies will not ask for immediate payment by a pre-paid reloadable debit card.
Never give out personal or financial information to anyone who emails or calls you unsolicited.
Do not wire money, provide debit or credit card numbers or Green Dot MoneyPak numbers to someone you do not know.
Don’t feel pressured by the caller, they will insist on immediate payment. Ask for the name of the caller and the company or government entity they represent. Call the company back and ask for the billing department or call the government agency back and ask about the situation.
If in doubt, call the non-emergency police number at 904-225-5174 and ask for an officer to come to review the situation with you.