South Carolina Electric & Gas is alerting customers about a scam that seeks to get customers to disclose personal financial information in order for qualify for federal funds to pay their utility bills.

The money does not exist. The scam is happening around the country, and dozens of local SCE&G customers have fallen for it, said Molly Morris, general manager of customer service for the Cayce-based utility.

SCE&G said Tuesday that customers are being contacted through phone calls, fliers, social media, text messages and via word-of-mouth with claims that President Barack Obama is providing credits or applying payments to utility bills.

To receive the money, the scammers say they need the customers’ Social Security and bank routing numbers. In return, customers are given a phony bank routing number that will supposedly pay their bills. In reality, there is no money.

“Bill payments are only accepted at SCE&G business offices, by mail, online or through SCE&G’s phone payment provider, BillMatrix, by calling 1-800-450-9160,” Morris said.

She added that customers should hang up and call SCE&G if they receive a call from someone claiming to be seeking payment on behalf of the company.

“Don’t surrender to high-pressure tactics over the phone for financial information,” she said.

If someone believes they have been a victim of this latest billing scam, they should call SCE&G’s customer service department at 1-800-251-7234.