Doorstep crime and scam awareness

Doorstep crime awareness

You should always be careful when answering your door to someone you don't know. Sometimes people can come with criminal intentions, wanting to get inside your home. They may tell you that:

  • your house needs to be repaired
  • they will tarmac your driveway
  • trees need cutting
  • they are from the council or water company and need to check something inside your property.

These bogus callers can be male, female, old or young, and may be on their own or in a group.

If you think you've been approached by, or been a victim of, a bogus caller please contact us on 03454 040506. If you feel threaten then call Cheshire Police on 101.

To keep safe:

  • Fix a security chain or spyhole to your door and use it whenever anyone knocks
  • If you feel unsure about the caller - don't answer the door
  • If you feel unsure after speaking to the person at the door - say "no thanks", and close it
  • Never go to the bank or building society with a caller or workman

Scam awareness

Some key facts about scams

  • £5 billion – the estimated amount lost each year by UK consumers to mass-marketed scams via phone and post.
  • One in ten people have fallen victim to financial scams losing hundreds, sometimes thousands, even hundreds of thousands of pounds.
  • £4,000 is the average loss from job scams with the 18–25 the most defrauded age group in this category.
  • More than half dating fraud victims reported suffering ill-health as a consequence.
  • £5.2 million – the loss to consumers as a result of ticket fraud in 2015.
  • £20,000 – average losses of victims of investment scams.
  • Women aged 50–64 are the most at risk of subscription traps (free trial scams) offering beauty products.

Current scams

  • Pension early release scams
  • Investment scams
  • Social Media subscription traps or free trial scams
  • Lottery / prize drawn or inheritance scams
  • Copycat Government official services – passport and DVLA
  • Council Tax rebanding scams

What can consumers do to tackle scams?

There are three things that consumers can do if they suspect they’re the target of a scam:

  • Get advice from the Citizens Advice consumer service website or contact 03454 04 05 06. To report a problem to trading standards, contact the Citizens Advice consumer service. Trading standards are responsible for protecting consumers and the community against rogue and unfair traders.
  • Report scams and suspected scams to Action Fraud 0300 123 2040. Action Fraud is the UK’s national reporting centre for fraud and internet crime. (If debit cards, online banking or cheques are involved in the scam the consumer’s first step should be to contact their bank or credit card company.)
  • Tell family, friends, neighbours so that they can avoid scams.

As consumers you can also do the following to cut down unwanted contacts.