Advice for Householders Some good advice to help you keep you, your familyand your property less vulnerable to the attentionsof thieves and confidence tricksters.....Prize phone "scam"Kent Trading Standards say pre-recorded voice mail messages informing people they have won a cash prize are best ignored. The caller requests you ring an 090 number to get a prize number or asks for details of your mobile phone and that you text a mobile number to claim the prize. Calling 090 numbers can cost up to £1.50 per minute and giving a personal mobile number with other details could allow it to be used to access your service and deduct money from your credit or account. Defeat Bogus CallersFit a door chain and use it every time you answer the door. Don't leave back doors unlocked or accessible ground floor windows wide open.Be wary of all callers, including women and children - burglars don't always look like burglars. Suspect uninvited "builders" or "roofers" who say that your house is in need of repair or offer "spare tarmac" to do your drive.Criminals may try to distract you with a plausible excuse while an accomplice steals your property. Excuses can range from a child who has lost a ball or a pet to asking for a drink of water or to use the toilet.Ask what the caller wants and his or her identification. If uncertain about any caller, telephone their organisation for confirmation. Use the number from the Phone Book and shut the door whilst making the call.If still uncertain, send them away. If it is important, genuine callers will return when a friend or neighbour is present. Some gas, electricity and water companies run password schemes. Find out about yours. These schemes are especially useful to the partially sighted who have difficulty in seeing identification.It is sometimes necessary to pay people at the door. Minimise risk by keeping the chain on whilst talking to the caller; shutting the door whilst sorting out the money and never bringing a bag, purse or wallet to the door.Never feel embarrassed about refusing to let callers in. Shed AlarmsGarages, sheds and outbuildings are often full of tools and equipment - ideal for breaking into the house and expensive to replace. It's sensible to make outdoor storage places secure, chain up ladders and other items so they can't be easily removed and fit an alarm if possible. Pedal Cycles - At Risk!Pedal cycles are high on the list of property stolen from sheds and garages. Today's bikes are often worth over £200 - yet people often don't lock up, have no idea of the serial numbers and sometimes don't even know the make or model of the cycles. This causes a lot of problems with recovery and insurance companies - not to mention children who are suddenly without their "pride and joy". Don't Be A Cash Machine VictimIt's sensible to be very wary when using cash point machines. * Don't let anybody look over your shoulder and see you enter your PIN number. * Put money and receipts away safely. * Be sure to retrieve your cash card.Thieves may to try to distract you with questions or "problems" while you are in the process of withdrawing money. Whilst your attention is diverted, they steal your card from the machine. You assume the machine has "eaten" your card and go off to complain. Meanwhile, the tricksters, having seen you enter your PIN, use the card to steal your money.Keeping a cash card together with a note of your PIN number in a wallet or purse, is an "open door" to your bank account if they are stolen. It almost certainly violates your agreement with your bank or credit card company. Most cards will let you change your PIN to a group of numbers that you can easily remember. Well worth doing next time you use your card! Save on InsuranceThere's a possibility of discounts on home insurance to members of NhW schemes. Check with your insurer. Doorstep TradersBe on guard against unscrupulous doorstep traders. The opening gambit by these unwelcome callers is often on the lines of: * "Congratulations! you've won a prize....", * "I noticed you've got a few loose tiles on your roof....", * "There have been a lot of burglaries in this area recently.....", * "This cut-price special offer is only available if you sign today......" or * "I'm doing a survey...".This leads to them offering goods and services like home security systems, vacuum cleaners, property repairs or damp proofing. They often prey on elderly or vulnerable consumers, use pressure selling tactics to persuade people into buying and don't tell them about their right to cancel if they change their mind after signing a contract.To help stamp out these unscrupulous pests, the Police advise a firm refusal, never to allow them entry to the house and, if possible, to phone KCC Trading Standards to put them in the picture. There's more information on the Internet at www.ripofftipoff.net . Internet ScamsThe Department of Trade and Industry has advice on scams and rip-off's on the web. See their website: 'Don't be a mug'. Concerns Over "Security" Photos OfferHouseholders have been uged to be cautious about a company who make contact saying that they are from a fire and security business and offer to take photos of jewellery and other valuable items to act as photographic evidence if lost or stolen. Kent Trading Standards, the Police and Neighbourhood Watch have strong reservations about traders of this type. They say it is a good idea to have photographs taken, but it is advisable to do this yourself.
Name & Shame time in & around Temple Ewell area.Alan Barker back garden builder from Canterbury. He has no respect for the environment, trees and especially tree preservation areas. He tries to alter plans to suit himself and feed his greed.Keep your eye out for this builder & watch his actions. Get yourself plans from DDC if you are unfortunate to have him building near to you.
Post a Comment