Scam Alert! Avoid Distraction Burglary On Your Doorstep!

Thames Valley Police advice
Thames Valley Trading Standards and Police have issued a warning about “Nottingham Knockers” in the area. Read on to learn more and discover how to avoid being a victim of distraction burglary and doorstep scams!

What are “Nottingham Knockers”?

This is a term used to describe people that go door to door, selling small items. These are normally cleaning supplies or stationery but can be anything that they can carry or wheel around. The prices are marked up but not enough to cause an immediate refusal.

To get people to pay these inflated prices, the seller has a convincing story to tell. Versions of this have been that they’re:

  • Working for a charity
  • On a scheme for the unemployed
  • Ex-offenders starting a new life
  • Homeless or in a shelter
  • In need of a fresh start after leaving military service

They often show fake but convincing ID cards to back up their story too. But don’t be fooled! Thames Valley residents are at risk of more than over-priced washing powder…

Homeowners are being emotionally manipulated by burglars!!!

Distraction burglary by doorstep scammer in Windsor

A gentleman in Windsor was recently scammed in this way. He opened his door to a man claiming to be ex-military who had been given a two-week opportunity to sell household cleaning supplies.

After agreeing to buy a couple of items the homeowner was told he didn’t need cash for his £25 payment, he could use a card. The scammer held the portable card machine high as he entered the sale details “so the signal didn’t drop“.

The victim entered his PIN number and asked for a receipt but, conveniently, “the receipt wasn’t printing“. Then he was told only £20 had gone through on the card machine so he gave another £10 in cash, believing it was going to a worthwhile charity.

Shortly after, the homeowner became suspicious and contacted his bank. They informed him he had actually been charged £400!

More danger on the doorstep

These criminals have also been known to work in pairs. One of them will keep the victim busy at the front door while the other finds a way into the house round the back for easy pickings!

Often the thieves are long gone before the victim notices anything missing.

Some criminals use Nottingham Knocking as a tactic to find properties to break into. Their interest lies in looking around to see who is vulnerable to burglary and what security measures are in place.

Avoiding scammers and distraction burglars

The police advise a one line response to anyone that knocks to sell something. They want people to say “No thank you, we do not buy goods or services at the door”. State this clearly, close and lock the door. Don’t get drawn into conversation. This will keep you from being tricked like the Windsor case.

See who’s at the door without opening it with a visual and audio access control system. These are not just for blocks of flats, Falcon recently installed one for this happy customer in Seer Green.

A door entry system means you always know who’s on the other side. And you can see and speak to them without compromising your security! It’s also convenient for those with mobility issues or too busy to get to the door. Just answer from inside! Unwanted visitors can be turned away. Delivery drivers can be asked to leave the package on the doorstep for when you’re ready to pick it up.

Security advice you can trust

The best security systems start with a personalised home survey. A qualified industry professional will be able to look at your property like a burglar would, so you can be sure you’re completely protected. So how do you know who to trust with your home and family security?

Falcon have been Proudly Protecting Property all across the Thames Valley for more than 25 years. We are SSAIB accredited which is your guarantee that you’re getting the best service and equipment. Our many satisfied customers trust us because we make and keep three promises:

  • We will come when we say we will
  • We won’t put the prices up every year
  • We keep the equipment working the way it’s supposed to

For your FREE security survey simply fill your details in the form below. One of our friendly team will get back to you to arrange a convenient appointment!