Nowadays it seems there is always someone out there, trying to rip you off. You might get e-mails from a Nigerian Prince who claims he has millions of dollars that he has inherited, but can’t claim the money in his name and needs an overseas business partner. Or maybe you have won a “free cruise” with amazingly low fares to some exotic destination, but you have to book the trip today with incredibly high hotel fees. Or maybe one, of the thousands of other online scams, has made its way to you email inbox.
Regardless, which one it was, we have all seen them and we all usually do the right thing, and ignore them. But are you aware of something called “the locksmith scam”? It’s a scam that is as prevalent today, as it was 5 years ago and has more victims than the Nigerian prince email or that free cruise.
Here is how it works and how you can avoid it.
Let’s say you need the service of a locksmith, and you do a quick Google search for a locksmith in your town. Your results will look something like this:
If you are not internet savvy, or in a rush, you may not know and/or notice that the first three options are paid advertisements. As an employee of The Flying Locksmiths, in Randolph, I can assure you, that there are literally no other locksmiths in town. We are the only ones. So, who are these other guys? One claims to be the #1 Randolph Locksmith, while another is advertising $15. That seems legitimate. How many service companies do you know that are coming to your home, for $15, before they even know what kind of work you need done.
This is basically how the scam works. They hope to catch you with the Google Ads and low prices. Once you call these con artists, they will send out someone in their own personal car or van. No uniform or company logo or any professionalism whatsoever. Then, once they look at the door, the prices start to sky rocket. They may say its high security and needs to be drilled and replaced. Or, they might tell you something else altogether, but it will inevitably cost you more money. Then these hacks destroy your door, install something they bought at a hardware store and give you an enormous bill. Don’t fall for it. Check out my next blog, for the 10 ways you can avoid being scammed by the phony locksmiths, so you can make sure the company you call is legitimate!