Scammers are targeting consumers who use Green Dot cards, Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt warned Thursday.
Green Dot cards are available at convenience stores and pharmacies. Consumers can add money to the cards and use them to pay bills or to put money into online accounts. Green Dot also produces pre-paid debit cards.
According to a press release from the AG's Office, scam artists are using both types of cards to steal cash from victims.
Pruitt warns that scammers will call victims and tell them their electricity will be disconnected if they don't make a payment. They tell victims to put money on their cards and provide their "money pack" pin code, allowing the scammers to transfer the money immediately from the Green Dot card to another account.
The cards are pre-paid, so once the money is gone, it's a lot harder—if not impossible—to get back.
The AG's Office said at least three customers of East Central Oklahoma Electric Cooperative in Okmulgee have been contacted with this scam. It's also reportedly happened in other states.
"This scam is spreading across the country and has hit Oklahoma," Pruitt said. "Oklahoma utility consumers and others who use pre-paid cards need to be careful. Do not give your pin numbers or send pre-paid debit cards to anyone who contacts you over the telephone or online until you verify they are a legitimate service."
The Attorney General's Public Protection Unit provides the following tips to avoid fraud:
To report suspected fraud or scams, you can contact the AG's Public Protection Unit at (405) 521-2029, (918) 581-2885.