Residents urged to stay vigilant against rogue callers

A seasonal 20% increase in reports of doorstep crime over the summer and early autumn months, means Trading Standards South West (TSSW) is urging residents to be vigilant.

The warning comes during Trading Standards South West’s Week of Action, a five-day campaign launching on 9 September 2019 to raise awareness of Trading Standards’ consumer protection work.

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Cornwall Council’s Trading Standards Officers warn that residents are more at risk from rogue traders calling at our homes at this time of year and call on friends and neighbours to look out for signs of rogue trading in their community. Fraudsters will often target the most vulnerable people, overcharging for poor or unnecessary work, and in some cases may be using exploited labour to carry out the work.

Doorstep callers offering driveway and roof repairs are among this summer’s most commonly reported complaints to Trading Standards; and therefore any unexpected works being carried out in the area may be a cause for concern.

Councillor Rob Nolan, Portfolio Holder for Environment and Public Protection said: “As is typical at this time of year we are seeing an increase in reports of rogue traders calling on people in their homes. It is reassuring to see that people are recognising this type of crime and reporting it to Trading Standards via the Citizens Advice service. 

“We urge everyone to be vigilant and to report anything suspicious. Genuine traders will not call uninvited at your door and try to persuade you that work needs doing to your home or garden.”

Trading Standards offer the following advice to South West residents:

  • If you don’t know who is knocking at your door – DON’T OPEN THE DOOR.
  • If the person refuses to leave, or you feel threatened or scared, call the police on 999.
  • To deter rogue traders, display a “No Cold Callers” sticker on your door. These are available from your local Trading Standards by calling Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 04 05 06.

Anyone can help combat doorstep crime by reporting doorstep rogue traders to Trading Standards via Citizens Advice on 03454 04 05 06.

Raising awareness of doorstep crime is one of five initiatives under the Trading Standards Week of Action. For more information and to see the other priorities in the Week of Action, visit www.tssw.org.uk.