BBB Logo

Better Business Bureau ®
Start With Trust®
Eastern Washington, North Idaho and Montana
Senior Warning: Watch for Doorstep Scams, Others: Watch for Questionable Meat Sellers
January 07, 2011

DOORSTEP SCAMS

Seniors Be Forewarned about Fake Utility Employees Going Door-to-Door

Incidences Showing Up in Other Parts of the Country

BBB wishes to warn its regional communities about a series of warnings that have been issued by out of area law enforcement regarding scams involving individuals posing as water department or electrical department employees: men in work jackets identifying themselves as water company employees needing to check water pressure problems or electrical employees needing to check electrical panels.

Once inside the suspect will take the homeowner to the basement where they keep them engaged in conversation. While the homeowner is busy with the "employee" other suspects enter the residence to steal valuables.

FULL STORY HERE

http://qconline.com/archives/qco/display.php?id=525260

ANOTHER WARNING ABOUT THIS SCAM

http://www.wifr.com/news/headlines/Rockford_Police_Warning_Seniors_About_Doorstep_Scam_112904724.html?ref=724

BBB AND EXPERT ADVICE


All legitimate service workers will have proper identification. Homeowners should always confirm by phone any work or service call you have not requested with the office of the appropriate agency PRIOR to letting anyone into your home, or allowing anyone to tamper with or touch your equipment. If you can't verify the legitimacy of the person at your door, you have a right to not let them in.

We ask you to share this information with friends and neighbors. If this type of activity comes onto your radar in your neighborhood, attempt to get people and vehicle descriptions and/or a license plate and call police.

TRAVELING/DOOR-TO-DOOR MEAT SELLERS

First off, not all traveling meat sellers are bad. But, when they show up at your door and don't let you know who they are, and don't have the proper refrigeration set up for their truck or van or vehicle, they have entered the area of "questionable," for there are very specific things a door-to-door meat seller must have in place to be operating legitimately, including permits, proper refrigeration, etc. depending on the area in which they are selling.

SPOKANE SCENARIO

A man came to a Spokane woman's door this week and produced a laminated card, but wouldn't let her look at it. He told her, "I'm sure you've had fine steak served at (name of a Coeur d'Alene restaurant) and I'm sure you enjoy eating steak and I have this meat to sell."

Her dogs started barking and she couldn't really hear the rest. She asked him to leave. He was driving a large, newer pickup with large wheels (jacked up) and did NOT have any refrigeration capacity. He only had a toolbox behind the cab. Last year, someone came to her door about this time of year selling insecticide and tried to barge his way into the house. He, too, had a laminated card and wouldn't let her look at it.

BBB ADVICE on SCREENING MEAT SELLERS

http://www.bbb.org/us/article/can-you-trust-a-door-to-door-meat-salesman-19818