Monday, 29 September 2014

Another scam?

Yesterday was as close to a normal day as I've had for months, by which I mean problems, phone calls, visitors and Uncle Tom Cobly and all!

I have grown highly suspicious of firms ringing up to tell me of new initiatives to help the elderly...especially when there are time issues involved....

"This offer is only for one week. If you do this now it will save you a lot of money and by chance there is an appointment available in your area tomorrow! "

The green energy firm who used this technique on us last year closed their doors soon after so that when things went wrong they no longer existed as a company. I am still living with the consequences...

The difficulty I had then during a period of great personal distress will stay with me for ever but that experience did make me wary yesterday when a similar situation developed...

I consented to an interview and then doubts started so I got onto the Internet. The company was very new, had no trading figures and no proper email address. It was impossible to contact them except by ringing back on the number they had used to contact me. After a long period of waiting for the phone to be answered I cancelled the appointment. If I miss out on this wonderful deal so be it...at least this way I have peace of mind...

It occurred to me then that the old are potentially big business....firms realising the vulnerability of old people on their own are quite happy to take advantage of that and the sales technique is much the same whether it's security systems, green energy or home improvements. Many of us would be unable to check on the Internet.

I hope I am not now getting extremely cynical in my old age but I would urge people who get calls from firms promising great savings if you act immediately, to investigate the companies involved.

If any offer seems too good to be true then it probably is....Us old people living alone need to be aware that our vulnerability makes us very promising targets!

 

2 comments:

  1. I never, ever engage with these people, to the extent of being rude or accusing them of harassment because in my view that is what it is.

    I often wonder if Saga magazine sells it's subscriber list to these people because they often address me by name, or ask to speak to my spouse by name and seem very reluctant to disclose their name, or if they do so, it's probably an alias.

    No, scammers took advantage of Jen's Dad in his old age, in particularl the junk mail scams inviting money to be sent off for rubbish merchandise or because they offered a huge cash prize which would solve all of his problems. Sadly, though we tried to protect him, we couldn't be there all of the time and he continued to respond to them time and again - at some great cost to his bank balance.

    These people have no morality at all. They deliberately set out to exploit the vulnerable knowing full well what they're doing. They are con artists and pretty poor ones at that. :(

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    1. Oddly one of friends arrived yesterday to tell me that she'd had a very similar call.....they must be working this area! Like you I wonder how they get the names and addresses and indeed know our ages... She saw them off when they announced they would be calling on her soon with no attempt to make an appointment.

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