Rockford Police are warning area residents of a scam that appears to be spreading.

Officials say several more incidents now have been reported involving a male calling small businesses and advising he was from ComEd. The caller says the business's account was overdue and that power would be shut off. He then asks that a prepaid credit be obtained to pay the overdue balance.

No utility company would ever direct someone to obtain a prepaid credit card to pay their bill. ComEd has confirmed that this is a scam. In one recent instance a resident received a Skype call from India reported that she owes money. The resident was told to log into a website that allowed the caller access to the resident's computer. The caller instructed the resident to type in her checking account numbers so he could pay off her alleged overdue bill.

And since thieves will try anything to separate you from your money, that's not the only current scam in operation:

...a caller [will] contact an elderly person and advise that their child or grandchild has been arrested in another country and they need money, generally thousands of dollars to secure their release.

Officials are asking you to alert loved ones and neighbors, especially the elderly, of the scams. They encourage you to report any suspicious incidents by calling the Rockford Police Department at 815-966-2900.

More From WROK 1440 AM / 96.1 FM