Police warn over bogus callers

If in doubt, keep them out.
If in doubt, keep them out.

STRATHCLYDE Police has initiated a new campaign warning residents to be aware of bogus callers.

There has been a recent spate of sneak-in thefts and bogus callers around the southside and police have said that residents should always check who is looking to access their home.

There are two distinct variants of people who could threaten your home: the bogus caller and the bogus worker.

The bogus caller uses distraction techniques to preoccupy the target and steal from their home.

It may be someone wishing to use your bathroom, asking for a cup of water or requesting to use the phone.

Whilst the occupier’s back is turned, the thief will be away with anything they can find.

Bogus caller also turn up in the guise of a utility worker or tradesman and, once they gain access to the property, they will steal from within.

The bogus worker, on the other hand, in that they carry out general maintenance work which turns out to be shoddy or incomplete.

They then charge an excessive amount for the work which is vastly different from the original quotation.

Another tactic used is to ask for the money up front under the pretence of purchasing building materials.

After the cash is received, they will not return to the premises and the work is left undone.

Several years ago, The Extra ran a successful campaign warning our readers to be wary of people coming to their door.

But this is a cyclic crime and has a tendency to return year after year.

Police have published clues to help the public spot a bogus caller.

They say that visitors from companies should arrange an appointment with people before calling at their door.

If they do call at someone’s door when they are alone, police say the resident should ask them to come back when someone else is there – genuine company representative would not have a problem with that.

A bogus official is one that comes to your door claiming to be from a council department or utility company.

They may be smartly dressed or be wearing a uniform – but be sure to ask for identification.

Bogus sales people could attempt to sell you products you don’t want or charge an unfair price.

Never agree to pay for something at your door or invite any sales person into your home who appear unexpectedly.

Bogus workmen can show up at your home and try to trick you into paying for work they claim needs carrying out.

First, check if the work is really needing done.

But, even if it does, never pay money up front. In fact, get three different, written quotations on company headed paper with the name, address and phone number on it.

As well as workmen or sales people, bogus callers can also introduce themselves as being in need of help.

If this happens, be very careful and think seriously if you want the person in your home.

Remember: it’s your home and no one has the right to enter it.