Important information Cold caller and fraud
Doorstep scams are on the increase, with criminals trying to trick you into paying them money or gain access to steal items from inside your home. It’s good to know about some of the typical tricks that scammers use. Below is some great hints and tips on how to stay safe on your doorstep.
While there are many legitimate trades people and officials, it’s wise to be on your guard when you answer your door. Doorstep scammers can be pushy and persuasive and it can be easy to fall victim. It’s especially important to be careful if you live on your own. If you’re being pressured or feel unsafe, contact friends, family or the police.
Lock, stop, chain and check
• Lock: secure all your other outer doors as the person at the door may intend to distract you while an accomplice gets in through a back door
• Stop: think about whether you’re expecting anyone • Chain: put the door chain on or look through the window or spyhole to see who’s there
• Check: ask for an identity card and examine it carefully - you can always tell the caller to come back another time when someone will be with you.
Put up a deterrent sign
You could put a ‘no cold callers’ sign up on your door or window, which should deter any cold callers from knocking on your door.
Password protected You can set up a password with your utility companies so you know that they are genuine if they send someone round. Phone your utility company to find out how to do this.
Check their credentials
You should always check a seller or trader’s credentials before agreeing to purchase their products or services.
Call the police
Finally, remember that you can dial 999 if you’re suspicious or the caller won’t leave. Call the police non-emergency number 101 if you’re not in immediate danger but want to report an incident.
If you think you’ve been a victim of doorstep crime, please call the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 03454 040506 or visit adviceguide.org.uk
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