Cold callers and advice for residents
Your local Neighbourhood Policing Team, have become aware of various companies operating in the area, who are offering various services, including PPI Refund Claims, and Council Tax Refund Claims, in return for a fee.
It is important that, should you have any dealings with ANY company who make unsolicited contact with you, either in person, by telephone or otherwise, that you do all you can to ensure the legitimacy of the company and the representative.
However to safeguard yourself, I recommend you adhere to the following advice:
Avoid Being a Victim
- Be aware of pressure selling tactics such as claims of special offers or offers that are only on for one day and don’t let them make you think that you are the odd one out on the street who hasn’t bought from them
- If someone claims they are part of a Trade Association or an approved body, ensure they have evidence and don’t be scared to check up on them.
- If you have arranged an appointment and for someone to come and see you, use the password scheme when booking with the organisation. If the person calling on you doesn’t know the agreed password, don’t let them in. (Remember! Any doubt, call the company)
- Have a spy hole or peephole on your door so you can see who is calling
- Use a door chain before you are certain of who you are letting in
- Always ask for id and confirm it with the organisation they claim to be with by getting the number from your local directory or the internet (see list of useful numbers below). Don’t rely on the number the salesperson has given you
- Always have your doors locked. Distraction burglaries occur when one person has you engaged at the front door and an accomplice enters through the back door. A common tactic is for the person to suggest they need to gain access to your property due to a fault elsewhere in your area, and they need to check one of your services (Water, Gas etc). Remember, Refuse entry and, Check for ID, Check uniforms, and Check with the Company they claim to represent.
Any genuine representative will be more than happy to wait outside, whilst you make contact with the company he / she represents, to validate their identity. Companies may try to “Cold Call” you not only in person , at your door step, but also, by post or telephone, below are details to schemes which have been set up to assist in preventing yourself from being contacted by these methods.
The Silent Guard Service, aims to prevent silent calls, which are as a result of companies automated dialing systems, register below: Silent Guard http://www.silentgard.com/register.aspx
STOP / REDUCE “Cold Calling by Telephone”, by registering your details at the Telephone Preference Scheme - www.tpsonline.org.uk Phone: 0800 398 893
STOP / REDUCE “JUNK MAIL”, by registering your details at the Mail Preference Scheme - http://www.mpsonline.org.uk/mpsr/ Phone: 0845 703 4599
REMEMBER: NOT ALL COLD CALLERS ARE BOGUS, OR ACTING UNLAWFULLY, IF YOU HAVE ANY DOUBT, TAKE THEIR DETAILS AND ASK THEM TO RETURN ANOTHER DAY. MAKE ENQUIRIES WITH THE COMPANY, AND TRADING STANDARDS FOR YOUR AREA (http://www.tradingstandards.gov.uk/) .
If you have information regarding activity involving bogus companies and representatives then please ring 101
0800 169 6565
Association of Master Upholsterers
0149 445 2965
0845 300 0218
Consumer Council for Water
0121 345 1000
Corgi / Gas Safe Register
0800 408 5500
Energy Supply Ombudsman
0330 440 1624
Federation of Master Builders
0207 242 7583
020 7645 3700
Glass and Glazing Federation
0207 939 9101
0870 013 0382
G4S Utility Services (formerly AccuRead)
UK Head Office
0800 073 3000
0845 300 6301
0800 096 9000