An elderly victim was targeted today in a burglary in Pinner police have revealed.
Pinner police tweeted: “This afternoon we attended Lyndhurst Gardens, #Pinner to report an artifice burglary on an elderly victim.
The suspects claimed they were from the ‘Water Board’ and needed to fix a leak from a neighbouring property. Please warn elderly relatives of this modus operandi.”
The below is further info that can help you avoid scams like this:
An ‘artifice burglary’ is “Any crime where a falsehood, trick or distraction is used on an occupant of a dwelling to gain, or try to gain, access to the premises in order to commit burglary.” Victims tend to find that they have had money and/or valuables stolen and in many cases will only realise that they have been victims some time after the offence has actually been committed.
1. When someone knocks at the door, stop and think:
- are you expecting anyone?
- if someone is claiming to be from a company remember to ask what it is they are there for.
- always ask for an ID or any associated paperwork – get them to pass these through the letterbox as at this point you should still have your door closed.
- if you have any doubt you should ring the company they say they are from independently. Never ring the number given by the caller but instead locate it from another source, e.g. phonebook or directory enquiries.
2. Extra measures:
- ensure that your back door is always closed when answering the front door. Callers intent on gaining access to your property may be working in pairs – whilst one distracts you at your front door the other may be trying to enter your property via the back.
- never keep large sums of money in the house – use a bank or building society if possible.
- keep valuables and items of sentimental value where they are not easily accessible – the use of a small safe might be appropriate.
- keep documents containing personal details out of sight, e.g. passport, utility bills, bank statements etc.
- keep your keys in a safe place and not on display.
3. Call the police:
- if you are suspicious or feel that the caller may be bogus.
- if someone forces entry or enters your home without permission.
- if you notice valuables or money have gone missing shortly after someone has visited.
- whenever you think a crime has been, or is about to be, committed.
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