Friday, February 17, 2012

Door-To-Door "Utility Department" Scammers Are Here

That door-to-door thievery ring the police warned about yesterday?  It's here.

We've had several readers write in to say fake Com Ed workers have knocked on their doors in Sheridan Park, and CPNA sent out a warning to its residents that "Water Department" employees have knocked on doors in Clarendon Park.  These people target primarily the elderly, but they say they are utility workers, talk their way into your home, and carry off money, jewelry and other small items.

We can't stress enough --
  • don't let any unexpected workers inside your home
  • don't buzz anyone in you don't know
  • call 911 if someone tries to get into your place using this ruse.

Here's one story from a reader:

"I just wanted to let you know my upstairs neighbor came down and told me about this possibly dangerous scammer/intruder.  He said the guy knocked on his door this afternoon, told him he was from Commonwealth Edison and he needed to check his utility bill so he could give him a discount.  My neighbor said all he did was come in and look around. I told him he was more than likely "casing the joint."  But, my neighbor is a student so all he really has is books.  Maybe the flapper should try reading them, instead of scamming!!!  He described the intruder as black, short (between 5'3 and 5'5) and wearing a ComEd jacket.

We do have a "buzz-in" doorbell system and even though I have no idea how he got in, we both know how ineffective that buzz-in system can be when people just let others walk in with them.  The sad part is:  he had to get thru TWO doors to get into my "section."  We have a main door that requires a key and buzzer AND the buzzer is connected to your phone.  The second entrance has a manual buzz-in system and requires a key to get in it too.  But they BOTH have intercoms connected to them.  So SOMEONE had to LET this flipper-flapper in!  JUST TELL EVERYONE TO BE CAREFUL."

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