Are Door-to-Door Scams Still a Problem?
In the digital age, you probably hear mostly about scams as they occur on social media, email, or other pockets of the internet. You’ve likely also heard about phone scams. But one thing you probably don’t hear much about anymore is door-to-door scams.
Obviously, back in the day, this was the only way you could really run a scam. Today, it seems like most scammers have moved online. Well, door-to-door scams are definitely still very real! In fact, if you treat them as though they’re an ancient relic of the past, it’s more likely that you’ll end up being caught in one. By staying educated, you can protect yourself from these door-to-door scams.
What Type of Door-to-Door Scams Exist?
Plenty of legitimate reasons exist as to why people might visit your home in-person. It’s up to you to remember to be cautious. Here are some of the most popular door-to-door scams still in rotation:
- Donation scams: Someone pretends to be raising money for a real charity, but is pocketing that money.
- Survey scams: Someone pretends to be taking a survey or census and collecting data on homeowners, but is merely stealing your information.
- Home maintenance scams: Someone pretends to offer free home maintenance services such as roof repairs or vacuuming to scope out your home and make plans to break in later.
- Signature scams: Someone pretends to be a delivery person that needs you to sign for a package, but is merely gathering signatures that could be used for forging checks or other legal documents.
This isn’t a comprehensive list by any means. But you can get an idea of how easy it is for a scammer to pretend to be genuine.
What Can I Do to Avoid Door-to-Door Scams?
The best thing you can do is to never let people in your home that you haven’t pre-arranged to visit. And shut the door if you feel uncomfortable with what the other person is telling you. After all, a scammer can’t scam you if you aren’t listening to the scam. Not listening to a person is always the best option if you feel uneasy.
Of course, especially with door-to-door scams, this can be incredibly difficult. Hanging up the phone on someone you don’t want to talk to is much easier than closing the door in someone’s face. Scammers know that you don’t want to be rude. They prey upon your desire to be polite, because they certainly don’t have the same reservations.
How Can a People Search Engine Help?
If you want to make sure you’re being as safe as possible, a good thing to do is try and check everyone’s identities at the door. That’s where a site like PeopleFinders could come in handy. With PeopleFinders, you can try to research people right at your door from any device.
For example, if a person comes to your door claiming to be a representative from a charity you’ve supported in the past, don’t necessarily let that person in right away to talk. Ask for his or her full name, and then quickly try to perform a criminal records check.
For the sake of full disclosure, tell them what you’re doing. Hopefully, they will be understanding of your need to take extra precautions. Then, if the search results come back clean, you can probably feel a bit more comfortable in continuing to talk to that person. (But still remain cautious.)
If they decline to give you their name, that in itself is not proof of wrong-doing; some people are just very protective of their own information. Then again, it could also mean that they have something to hide. Either way, dealing with them further is a risk you don’t need to take.
Though it’s unlikely you’ve thought about them recently, door-to-door scams are still well in effect across the country. And, like so many scams, they take advantage of people’s good nature and inexperience in dealing with them. By taking just a minute to check these in-person scammers out first, you could very well save yourself your precious time, money, and peace of mind.
Image attribution: edbockstock – stock.adobe.comTags: Criminal Records, Scammer
Categorized in: Scams