Locks Online have a great guide on Distraction Burglary – Preventing bogus callers. Looking at recent news it seems cold caller crime is on the rise and its time we put our foot down. What to look out for, how to prevent it and how to tackle a cold caller is all included in this guide!
Your home is your safety net. You have valuables, irreplaceable and memorial items dotted around the house so why would you let a stranger in to take it all? Recently, it seems to be a reoccurring thing that distraction burglaries are happening more than ever and unfortunately, we are venerable enough to allow a stranger into our home, in the form of a pretend officer or meter reader service men. Mind you, women are more than capable of doing this scheme too! So how do we prevent bogus cold callers forcing their way into our homes? Read on to find out some great tips on keeping safe!
Identify who is at your door
This is the up most important I would suggest! You can start identifying who is at your door before you even think of opening it. The highest form of security is not opening your door until you feel it is safe to do so. Any genuine service person or officer will understand the caution and will not take offence if you were to shout through the door who is it? Its always worth too, if you dont have a window to look through to the front of the door, getting a door viewer. These can be picked up for a really good price and is definitely worth the small investment. These will allow you to look through your door to see who is standing at the front door. If it is somebody you do not know, you simply do not let them in.
If you would like to see a range of door viewers, CLICK HERE
Restrict access through your front door
Once you have distinguished who is at your door, it is important to ask questions and ALWAYS ask for some form of identity! Again, any genuine person will be more than happy to provide you with as much information as you need. In order for you to check the identity it is worth calling the company they work for and asking if you are due a check up or service. They will be able to provide you with all the information you need. While you do go and check, cold callers will be in their prime to push their way into your home as you may have left the door open. If you do not have a door chain or restrictor, make sure your door is shut tight. Again, second forms of security such as door chains are low on price and worth the money! Different forms of Identity can consist of a card with the company name and images on and never use a telephone number provided by the person at the door. This may be part of the scheme.
CLICK HERE for a great range of door chains
Hide keys and valuables from door
Having your car keys, money or any valuables on show will tempt anybody at your door to quickly grab them once your back is turned. It would be a good idea to have a basket or a box where you can keep car keys out of sight. We have noticed over the last few weeks that the most venerable part of a distraction burglary is when the occupant leaves the doorway unattended. This could be to get a glass of water, to check identification or to get the phone. Ensure that you keep valuables away from reach too if you are using a door chain. It is important to remember that although you may have closed the door shut to get to the phone or a glass of water, this was the prime opportunity for a potential burglar to look around the house as to what is in reach. Ensure all valuables are away from letter boxes or cat flaps.
Never invite people in that you are weary of
After identifying who is at the door and you feel safe enough to allow them into your home, remember that although they may be there to read the meter, they are still a stranger. A genuine officer or service man will never attempt to take any of your belongings however, if you do feel suspicious, ask them to leave and call the police. Dont feel you have to let somebody into your home to be kind!
Ask for help if you need it
If your home alone and somebody comes to the door you do not know, dont be afraid to call a neighbor or family member to help you. If you need assistance or would like somebody to be there if you have a service man or officer who needs to come into your home, it is wise to ask somebody to be there with you.
Try extra security if you feel uneasy
If you dont want to get secondary security in your home you can opt for a low cost intercom system. These will allow you to talk to somebody at the door and even view them if you get a video system. Again, these are great as you can identify who is at the door without having to open the door itself. Dont be put off with the idea of cost as you can pick up intercom systems for good prices and if you live in an area where you feel slightly unsafe, the cost will pay off.
CLICK HERE to see our video intercom systems
So all in all distraction burglaries can happen when you least expect it however, make sure you take precautions before and during answering your door. Everybody must feel safe in their home but dont be put off with the above information. This is just a guide as to how you can help prevent a possible bogus cold caller. Its easy to allow somebody into our homes so make sure you stay wise. If you would like more information on distraction burglaries or would like to know how you can help prevent them, call us on 01646 698218 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org .
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