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Security Tips to Protect against Strangers Pretending to be from Utility Companies

Although the burglar bars, alarm system and security doors protect against criminals gaining entrance to your house, the systems cannot protect you if you willingly allow strangers into your garden and home. Of course, you are not ignorant of the dangers associated with allowing someone from the street to enter your premises, but what if you believe the person to be from a utility company?  This is where diligence becomes important.

Newspapers are full of reports regarding robbers who gain entrance to homes, offices and farms under the disguise of being from plumbing companies, Eskom, the municipality, Telkom, SAPS, garden services, cellphone companies, and more.

If there is one security tip to remember then it is never to allow anyone entrance to your property without proper verification of their identity. You have the right to request ID, showing that they’re working for the company or organisation they claim and to demand a contact number. If you are even the slightest bit unsure, call the company number given and confirm the employee’s identity and reason for visiting.

However, the robbers can also give a false number where one of their partners answers the phone. For this reason, check the forms they provide and the letterhead. Don’t call a cell number – only a landline. Use the internet to confirm that the number is correct. You can also call directly to the head office of the particular utility company.

Security Tips – Questions to Ask in Determining Legitimacy of Visits

  • Did you expect a visit from the particular company or organisation?
  • Is the vehicle clearly marked to indicate the company?
  • Have the persons identified themselves properly?
  • Did they clearly state the purpose for visiting?
  • Do they wear uniforms?
  • Do they have a form or letterhead?

Only allow them entrance if you have another person present once you are satisfied with the reason for visiting, their details and have no reason to suspect foul play. If you have to let them in when you are alone, call your spouse, house partner or neighbour to inform them about the persons or SMS the details if you are alone. This includes the vehicle’s registration number, colour and model.

For understandable reasons you will not want to be suspicious of all people, but if you feel uncomfortable with any visitor or reason provided for the visit, then confirm their information.

Keep the security doors locked at all times. There is no reason for you to leave doors open while the company visitors are working on the telephone line in your garden or do a meter reading. Where possible, receive delivery goods at the gate, preferably through the fence.

Don’t lock up your dogs when strangers from such a company have to work in your garden or home. Rather keep the dogs on leash or have them in the home with you. Notify your home workers never to allow entrance to any strangers as many domestic workers have been attacked during such operations.

Following the above security tips will help to keep your loved ones safer, while our range of security products will help to protect against unauthorised access.