Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Not sure? Don’t open the door!

Not sure? Don’t open the door!
A recent national survey of doorstep crime victims found that;
·  35% of respondents would let someone into the house they didn’t know, 
·  30% of those who had door chains fitted didn’t use them, and
·  31% of victims stated their health had been affected by the incident.
Elderly women living alone are the most vulnerable, but doorstep crime can affect anyone. Bogus callers succeed because they sound believable, so don't be fooled.
Make sure vulnerable people in your community know how to protect themselves and their wider family from this despicable crime. Below are some simple steps which can help prevent.
·  Think before you open the door - use your chain and spy hole or look out of the window to see if you recognise them.   Keep your doors locked.
·  Make sure in your own mind that they are whom they claim to be
·  Ask callers for proof of identity. Genuine tradesmen should carry an identification card with their photograph on.
·  Check this carefully. If you are unsure, telephone the company the caller claims to represent.  Get the telephone number from a directory or a bill.
·  The Utilities now offer a password system. Any caller from one of these companies should be able to give a pre-arranged password as additional proof of identity.
·  Beware of callers who attempt to distract you by claiming that they have seen something untoward in your rear garden or somewhere which may encourage you to leave your house - they may have an accomplice awaiting this distraction.
·  If you are not convinced of the identity of the caller, don't let them in. Ask the caller to come back later and arrange for a friend, relative or neighbour to be present on their return or ask the caller to contact this person.
Remember, not sure? Don’t open the door!

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