(Beaver Dam) Beaver Dam police are warning residents about a brazen utility scam that is circulating throughout southern Wisconsin. With the arrival of colder weather, con men will call property owners to collect on a past due bill. Sergeant Erik Smedema says in order to coerce compliance they will often threaten to come to their home or business to shut off their heat and electricity. Smedema says the scammers will then inform the individuals that need to pay with an iTunes or a prepaid gift card. Smedema says no utility company will ever ask for a bill to be paid in gift cards. During a recent appearance on WBEV’s Community Comment, he shared an unfortunate situation where an individual paid over $500 dollars to fix a phony computer virus. He says the person sent $300 dollars in iTunes cards to fix the virus and then again sent $300 dollars once she was informed the first round did not fix the problem. Smedema says it is never a waste of time to double check by calling your local utility company and to trust your instinct if something does not feel right.