When most people purchase a home security system, they expect to get just that: security.
However, a new scam is targeting these very homeowners nationwide, threatening to take away the security they seek.
According to a July 30 WCPO article, police departments across the country, along with the home security company ADT, have reported an upswing in these scams — and thousands of Americans will have been victimized by the end of the year.
Scammers go door to door, telling the homeowner they’re there to upgrade the home’s security system, claiming they work for the security company.
“They’re knocking on our customers’ doors, saying they are either with ADT or saying other lies like ADT went out of business, or that their company bought ADT,” said David Bleisch, ADT’s corporate attorney.
If their plan works, the scammers are able to convince the homeowner to make a deposit — or even a multi-year contract — with an alarm company that may not even exist, only to never be heard from again. In other cases, scammers will actually tamper with the existing security system and dismantle its alarm to make a later break-in possible, Consumer Reports reported.
It’s an especially concerning trend, considering the fact that 41% of Americans now say they would prefer to purchase a brand new home over an existing one — and a good deal of these people will be outfitting their new homes with security systems.
And when the highest number of household break-ins take place in July and August, it’s especially important to be vigilant against potential home security scams.
Bleisch advised homeowners to never let someone into their house until the individual reveals his or her name and employer, and then to call one’s security company to verify the person’s identity. If the company representative doesn’t know the person at the door, it may well be a scammer.
“Before you let them into the house, make sure you know who you are dealing with,” Bleisch said.