East Lothian Council

Scams - A to Z

Service Outline

Remember - it's your home. You don't have to agree to anything you don't want to.

Avoid becoming a victim of doorstep crime.  You should always be careful when answering your door to someone you don't recognise.

Some strangers will come to your door for a legitimate reason. However, on rare occasions, people can come with criminal intentions,

Classic get into your house lines include:

  • the house needs to be repaired,
  • you need to improve your home security,
  • offers to tarmac your driveway,
  • cut grass / trees 
  • they are from the Council and want to check something inside your property.

These 'bogus callers', 'bogus workmen' or 'distraction burglars' can be male, female, old or young, and may come individually or in a group.

  • Fix a security chain to your door and use it
  • If you feel unsure about the caller - don't answer the door
  • If you feel unsure after speaking to the person at the door - say "no thanks", and close it firmly
  • Find out the name and address of the company that the person at the door works for - if you are concerned about any of the details that they provide, ask them to wait outside, and close the door while you call the company
  • Always look the number up in the phone book - never use a number the person provides you with
  • Don't be pressured by a sales pitch - you don't have to take the deal
  • Do not agree to any work on your property - inform the person that you will ask a family member or neighbour's opinion first
  • Check what rights you have - a seven day cooling off period is normal
  • Pay by credit card for any goods or services over £100. This may offer you protection under the Consumer Credit Act 1974
  • Always get a receipt with all the company details on it

Further Information

Criminal Justice Social Work Service

Telephone: 01620 827763

Brunton Hall, Ladywell Way, Musselburgh, EH21 6AF

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East Lothian Council, John Muir House Brewery Park Haddington East Lothian EH41 3HA.