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No incidents were recorded for Comrie

Wednesday 15th January 2020

What is Doorstep Crime?
Doorstep crime is principally committed against the elderly and vulnerable in their own homes by individuals or organised groups. These criminals systematically target their victims and adapt their criminal method to exploit their victim’s individual vulnerabilities. The impact of this type of crime has devastating effects on victims and our communities. Against the background of an increasingly ageing and diverse population the threat from doorstep crime is set to continue.

Perpetration of the crime may involve distraction, deceit, threats and violence.

Some offenders will alter their method of perpetration to gain the confidence of the victim and share this information with other criminals engaged in doorstep crimes. Many offenders are organised, well networked and will travel significant distances to commit crime, and view their criminal activity as a lifetime occupation. This is supported by the level of repeat victimisation experienced throughout the country.

Offenders may often appear extremely professional and have professionally presented business cards, flyers and advertising materials that are well designed and give the impression of a legitimate business.

For clarification purposes, doorstep crimes can be divided into four distinct categories.

Bogus Worker: Individuals who carry out work, often unnecessarily, which is of a substandard quality, charging an excessive fee. This includes individuals who obtain a deposit for material for work they do not thereafter undertake. These individuals are often referred to as Rogue Traders.

Bogus Official: Individuals who purport to be from a utility company, such as Water, Gas or Electricity companies etc., or use any other false story, designed to gain access to the property and distract the victim in order to steal from within. Often referred to as distraction thefts.

Bogus Representative: Individuals who falsely claim to represent an organisation, such as insurance companies, local companies, charities or banks etc., and induce the victim to give money or supply their bank details. This is more-often conducted over the phone and is commonly described as vishing.

Bogus Impersonator: Individuals who assume to be employed as a recognised professional, such as a Social Worker, Nurse, Doctor or Police Officer etc., in order to gain access to the property for other gain. Again often referred to as distraction thefts.

What can you do?
Be on guard if someone turns up unexpectedly. Genuine callers make appointments first.

Use a door chain or bar

Always put the chain on before opening the door.

Keep it on while talking to callers.

Don’t feel embarrassed – genuine callers expect you to be careful.

If you don’t have a door chain, get one fitted.

Check ID
Ask for ID from anyone who comes to your door, whether you expect them or not.

Genuine callers will carry company photo ID and show it when you ask.

Keep the door chained while you inspect their ID.

If the caller is unexpected, ring their office to confirm their identity. Don’t use the number on their ID card, look it up in the telephone directory or a recent bill. Genuine callers won’t mind waiting.

Don’t assume a caller is genuine because they are wearing a uniform.

If in doubt, shut them out!

If you have any doubts, tell the caller to come back when someone else is home. Genuine callers won’t mind rearranging.

You can tell callers to contact you by letter to arrange a more convenient time.

Only let callers in if they have an appointment, and you are absolutely sure they are genuine.

Who should I call?
If you feel threatened, unsafe, or suspicious of a caller, contact the police immediately on 999.

If you see something suspicious in your area, or want more advice about doorstep crime, contact the police on 101.

Try and take a note of vehicle details or registration numbers, and descriptions of anyone suspicious.If you want to contact the police anonymously, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111. You can also visit their website at www.crimestoppers-uk.org

 

If you want to contact the police anonymously, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111. You can also visit their website at www.crimestoppers-uk.org

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