Don't be a victim of doorstep crime

What does ‘doorstep crime’ mean to you?

Doorstep crime

To Police Scotland it means fraud, theft and deception. To victims, it can mean emotional turmoil, financial hardship, loss of independence and heartbreak.

Doorstep crime is carried out by people coming to your door to get in to steal things. They might be after money, perhaps by suggesting work needs done or asking for donations.

Opportunist criminals may also contact you by phone or online, so be careful about giving out personal information.

Doorstep criminals can be very convincing and can target anyone, but the elderly and vulnerable suffer most.

Remember, it’s your home. It’s up to you who you speak to at your doorstep or choose to let in.

How do you stay as safe as possible? Follow this advice: lock, stop, chain and check.

  • If in doubt, don’t answer the door
  • LOCK – Check the back door is locked when someone comes to the front door
  • STOP – Don’t open the door until you’ve looked to see who’s there
  • CHAIN – If you answer the door, keep the chain on and be on your guard
  • CHECK – If the caller says they are from a public service or utility company, check ID thoroughly. Take their details and call the published number from the internet or phone directory for their company to check if they are legitimate. Don’t use a phone number provided by the caller
  • Never be afraid to say ‘No thank you’ and close the door
  • Don’t take on face value that work is required on your property by a cold caller, no matter how convincing. If you feel there may be an issue, call a reputable company to check your property – you could ask your local trading standards department for advice
  • If you feel threatened, call 999 immediately.

Doorstep crime is under-reported. Tell Police Scotland if you’ve been a victim or if someone has been to your door acting suspiciously. It could avoid it happening to someone else.

Call 101 to report any crime or suspicious behaviour. If you feel threatened, dial 999. For more information, visit www.scotland.police.uk

Police Scotland are running Operation Monarda, a campaign focused on prevention of doorstep crime, from 21–28 May.

Friday, May 18, 2018