Central Maine Power Company officials say several attempts have been made to scam customers into paying nonexistent bills to a fraudulent account.

People claiming to represent CMP have been calling customers and demanding immediate payment, according to utility spokeswoman Gail Rice.

Some instruct customers to deposit cash or a money order into bogus accounts through convenience store cash transfer systems; others try to get customers to call a specified number and provide financial information for the payment.

The caller has tried to work his deception mostly on owners of small businesses and restaurants in the Lewiston-Auburn, Portland and Augusta areas, Rice said, but some residential customers have also reported suspicious calls.

To report a suspicious call, call 1-(800) 750-4000.

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