Black Hills Energy is warning customers about a payment scam making the rounds.

Spokesman Norm Long says someone claiming to be with the utility is calling customers and telling them that they're past due on their account. The caller then threatens to disconnect service if they're not paid immediately.

"If your account is at risk of service disconnection or you're due a refund, we will issue advance written notices by mail," said Shirley Welte, Vice President of Operations for Black Hills Energy.

"Beware, as perpetrators are becoming more sophisticated, manipulating caller ID or leaving a call-back number with a recording that mimics a utility's phone system message and options," Welte added.

Concerned customers are advised to call 1-888-890-5554 to verify the legitimacy of requests for payment history, amounts due or whether an employee was dispatched to their location.

Customers can also call Black Hills Energy's 24-hour emergency line at 1-800-694-8989 to verify the identity of someone claiming to represent the company.

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