News

Door to Door Salesperson Scams

In the age of technology and electronic scams, there are people still using old fashioned methods to steal from you. Most prevalent here in Mill Valley have been unwanted solicitors at the door. Magazines, food items, charity, home improvement, and utility scams are the most commonly solicited items presented at doorsteps. Below are some tips to avoid unwanted solicitors. These tips will keep you safe and minimize your chances of fraud.

  1. Don’t open the door late at night or early in the morning while it’s still dark outside.

  2. Check through the peep hole and only open for people you know.

  3. Instead of opening the door, you can talk through the door to say you aren’t interested in their service.

  4. Never let a solicitor inside your home! They might “case” your house to burglarize it at a later time.

  5. Question the identity of the salesperson by asking specific questions about the company, office space, or to see a form of work identification.

  6. Avoid utility scams. Check out this link for more info https://www.bbb.org/utilityscam/.

  7. Post signs that say “No soliciting”, or “beware of dog” to deter unwanted solicitors.

  8. Say you are a renter, rather than the owner, to avoid inquiries about home improvement such as landscaping or painting.

  9. Install security cameras to watch the driveway, or make sure cameras already in place are functioning properly.

  10. If you do make a purchase, never pay with cash. Pay with something traceable such as a credit card or PayPal.

  11. Call the police if you have an unwanted solicitor at your door or prowling your neighborhood.

These scams go unreported for a variety of reasons. Reasons include people feeling embarrassed by what happened to them, fear of retaliation, having too much pride to report it, etc. If you see anything suspicious, or are a victim, call the Mill Valley Police Department at 415-389-4100.