• Love Ballymena

Police urge public to be vigilant following suspicious reports of cold callers

Police in Antrim and Newtownabbey are appealing to the public to be vigilant to cold callers following a number of suspicious reports across Northern Ireland in recent days.

Crime Prevention Officer Constable Gibson explains: “These incidents have involved males calling to houses asking about motorhomes for sale or offering to carry out home repair work. While some of these callers may be genuine we are asking residents to follow some simple steps.

· Do not feel pressurised into opening your door. Tell the person to go away or point to the No Cold Callers sticker on your door. If you don’t have one please contact your local station on 101.

· Always ask for identification, especially if the person claims to represent a business or public service organisation. By using QuickCheck, people can phone 101 to check the identity of callers to their home who claim to represent an energy or water network company.

· Be sure your back door is locked before attempting to open your front door or vice versa. Sometimes a rogue caller can distract you while their accomplice tries to gain entry via other means.

· The Nominated Neighbour Scheme allows householders to nominate a person who will deal with callers to their home. If a caller arrives when you are alone in the house, they can be shown a card instructing them to contact your ‘Nominated Neighbour’, who will then try and check the caller’s identity avoiding the need for you to open your front door at all.

“I am appealing for anyone who has had similar calls to their home recently, and who is unsure as to whether the caller was genuine, to contact the non-emergency number 101 and report the matter.

“I am also making a direct appeal to friends and loved ones of older people, or those who are vulnerable in our communities to please, take a few minutes and have a conversation with them about what they can do to help protect themselves and their homes.”

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