Warning issued after cold callers target Knutsford Date published: 14th June 2017 9.53am

Officers are urging Knutsford residents to remain vigilant after a number of reports of cold callers in the local area.

On Thursday 8 June local officers received three separate reports from residents who had been visited by cold callers asking for money. In each of the cases the callers claimed that they have run out of money and needed cash to get back to their home towns. In two of the cases the victims refused to hand over any money, but in one case a vulnerable resident handed over more than £90.00.

Sergeant Kelly Johnston said: “Following these incident I would like to appeal to the local community to look out for elderly relatives, friends and neighbours to help reduce the likelihood of someone else becoming a victim. I would also like to remind all residents about the importance of not giving money to anyone who calls at your home unexpectedly.

“It’s also important that you don’t let strangers into your home; if somebody claims that they are from a legitimate organisation then make sure you ask for identification.

“Most importantly, if you have any doubts about them being genuine, don′t let them in and ask them to come back later when you are not alone. Any suspicious activity should be reported to police.”

There are a number of simple steps that residents can take to protect themselves their families, friends and neighbours, these include:

  • Check the identity of callers by calling the company they claim to be from. Use the telephone numbers listed in your local directory, online or provided independently by your service provider. Do not use any telephone numbers provided by the caller − they may be bogus. 
  • Telephone a neighbour or friend nearby to come along and check out the caller before you open the door to them. 
  • The "Waterboard" has not existed for 28 years; turn away anyone purporting to be from it. 
  • Keep cash in the bank where it is secure. 
  • Consider storing valuable jewellery in bank deposit box - contact your bank for details. 
  • Keep doors locked and windows secure at all times. 
  • Ensure that if you do let somebody in to your home, that you close the door behind them − distraction burglars often work in teams, while you′re distracted another person may sneak in through an open door.
  • If somebody asks for your help, needs to make a telephone call, needs a drink or wants directions, don′t feel pressurised into letting them in. Help through a closed door; refer them to a younger neighbour or call to ask someone to assist. 
  • Not sure? Don′t open the door.

Residents are advised to remain vigilant and report any suspicious activity to Cheshire Police on 101. Information can also be reported anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.