Warning and advice following cold caller in Skegness

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Lincolnshire Police are warning the public to be wary and offering advice on dealing with unexpected visitors after reports of an ‘unknown male’ cold calling a property in Skegness on Thursday.

PCSO Dave Bunker of the Skegness Neighbourhood Policing Team, sent out a Lincs Alert regarding the incident, which occured in the Gayton Close area.

He said: “The male called at a property unexpectedly asking to check the windows at the property. He did not show any identification and left the area within a short time.”

PSCO Bunker asked anyone with any further information to call 101 quoting incident number 215 of December 3, 2015.

He further warned people in the area to be wary, adding: “Most callers are genuine and mean you no harm, but bogus callers can often seem very plausible and will try to fool you.”

He offered the following advice for anyone worried about keeping safe and secure.

- Close and lock the back door and any accessible windows before you go to the front door.

- Bogus callers often work in pairs. One of them will try to keep you talking at the front door while the other tries to get in through the back door or a window.

- Look through your spy hole or window. Try to check who a caller is before opening the door. Don’t let any caller pressure you into making a quick decision - if you are unsure‚ do not open the door.

- Before you answer the door, put your door chain on and keep it on while you check the callers’ identity.

- If you want to check with their company, keep the door chain on‚ tell the caller you are going to call their company and close the door. A genuine caller will not object to you leaving them on the doorstep and closing the door while you confirm their identity‚ even if it is raining.

There are further things you can do if the caller says they represent an electricity‚ gas or water company or another organisation such as the council or a charity.

- If you have a password with the company, ask for it.

- Ask to see an identification card and if not ask the caller to go away and close the door. If the caller persists‚ dial 999 and ask for the police. If the caller does have an identification card, ask to see it.

- Examine the card to see if it looks genuine. Check the expiry date - is it still valid? Does the photograph on the card match the person at the door? Check the photograph is the original – has anything been stuck over it?

- If you want to call their company, do not use the telephone number on the caller’s identification card - if the identification card is not genuine then the telephone number on the card will not be genuine either. Find the telephone number in your phone book, on a bill or call directory enquiries.

- Ask the company to confirm they have sent someone out to you. They will ask you for information about the identification card, what the caller looks like and may also ask for the date of birth or password of the caller.

- If the company does not know the caller, dial 999 and ask for the Police, who will tell you what to do.