MCDOWELL, N.C. (WSPA) – McDowell County Sheriff’s Office officials said residents should beware of a new scam supposedly involving a utility company.

Deputies said a man has been calling residents to say that they need to purchase gift cards in order to get an upgraded power meter.

“Duke Power doesn’t operate this way,” Capt. Shanon Smith said. “They wouldn’t require someone to go to the store and purchase a gift card to get upgraded equipment. Please do your research. Get a name and number of the employee. Require proof that they are who they say they are.”

If you have questions or concerns, call the sheriff’s office at (828) 652-2235.