Following a number of recent reports, police have issued advice on what to do when faced with an unwanted cold caller to your door.
PSNI Supt. Simon Walls said: “Older and more vulnerable members of the community may feel pressurised into accepting goods or service from cold callers therefore the following advice should be shared with anyone you know who lives alone or requires extra support:
• Think before you open the door – use your chain and spy hole or look out of the window to see if you recognise them.
• Ask callers for proof of identity. Genuine tradespeople should carry a photographic identification card. Check this carefully.
• Be wary of callers who attempt to distract you by claiming that they have seen something untoward in your rear garden or there is something wrong with one of the utilities in your home.– they may have an accomplice who is waiting to act on 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.
·If a person’s behaviour is suspicious call the police on 101 or in an emergency 999.
“Police also have a Nominated Neighbour Scheme whereby if a caller arrives when you are alone in the house, they can be shown a card instructing them to contact your ‘Nominated Neighbour’, who will then try and check the caller’s identity avoiding the need for you to open your front door. The forms can be downloaded from our website or contact a local officer who can provide them free of charge https://www.psni.police.uk/news/campaigns/nominated-neighbour-scheme/.
“For details of current scams and how to avoid becoming a victim of a scam go to the Scamwise NI internet site at www.nidirect.gov.uk/campaigns/scamwiseni.”