Stansted residents urged to be on guard following reports of bogus caller

RESIDENTS in Uttlesford are being warned to be vigilant after a council tenant reported a suspected bogus caller.

RESIDENTS in the Stansted area are being warned to be vigilant after a council tenant reported a suspected bogus caller.

A man called at the home of a tenant at the Mead Court sheltered housing complex last Thursday claiming to be visiting to check the gas. He entered the property and claimed there was a gas leak, which subsequently proved to be untrue.

Although nothing appears to have been taken from the property, Uttlesford District Council is warning residents to be on their guard against any such callers. The incident has been reported to the police.

Head of housing services, Roz Millership, said: “We would like to advise our tenants, and all residents, of this incident and encourage people to take care when answering the door to anyone claiming to be a tradesman, from an energy company, from the council, or anyone else you are not expecting.

“If you don’t know them, always ask for identification. Legitimate callers will not mind and it is much better to leave someone on the doorstep for 10 minutes than to open your home up to a thief or conman. Please remember to never use a phone number they have given you to check their identity – find the number yourself in the phone book, Yellow Pages or online or ring directory enquiries. Once you have done this, you could also ask a neighbour to join you before you let anyone in.

“The council regularly gives its tenants advice on how to beat bogus callers and we are reminding tenants, particularly our more vulnerable tenants, once again in light of this incident.”

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Always report bogus caller crime to the police. The Essex Police website - - contains information on bogus callers.

The Home Office produces a useful leaflet called How to Beat the Bogus Caller which can be downloaded from the Essex Police website or, for a printed copy, call Uttlesford District Council on 01799 510510.