In this Wednesday, April 14, 2016 photo, Peter Froehlich holds the landline telephone he uses at his rural home in Whitefield, Maine. Across the country, telecom companies are lobbying lawmakers to be released from their mandate of providing service to every home. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)
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Georgia’s Electric Cooperative, Georgia EMC is warning electricity customers about a new, sophisticated phone scam that continues to make its way around the state.

The advanced ploy that manipulates caller ID systems and scammers are after quick cash, social security and credit card numbers.

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Leslie Thompson, spokeswoman with Cobb EMC, said the utility company hasn’t seen any cases of that specific scam but has seen an uptick in the last six to eight months of bogus calls, according to a press release issued by the entity.

EMC officials believe the problem will get worse before it gets better. From the press release:

Somehow the ne’er-do-wells have found a way to replace a burner phone’s number with the number of an EMC. A person on the line tells the customer their service will be cut off if they don’t buy a pre-paid card and pony up right away.

Even if you miss the phony call and ring the number back, you’ll hear the EMC’s exact on-hold message before speaking to someone.

The EMCs are having a difficult time getting the word out and are asking Georgians to share the information with as many people as possible.

“There’s no way to trace it or have it disconnected,” one cooperative vice president of member services said. “I don’t know how they do it.”

EMC companies do not call and solicit payment over the phone. If you’re not sure if the person you’re on the phone with is legitimate, just hang up.

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Jessica Szilagyi is statewide contributor for All On Georgia and Market Manager for Southeast Georgia. Her main focus with All On Georgia is state and local politics as well as agriculture. She’s served as a policy analyst at the State Capitol and as a campaign manager in political races across the state.

She writes for GeorgiaPol.com and has two blogs of her own: ‘The Perspicacious Conservative’, a political blog, and ‘Hair Blowers to Lawn Mowers’, a blog on moving from Atlanta to rural Georgia. Jessica is also a contributor for Fox5 Atlanta’s ‘Like it Or Not.’

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