Common Locksmith Scams You Need To Look Out For

Most locksmiths are upstanding members of the community who will happily help you out of a bind. There are the minority who will attempt to take advantage of your desperation, though. These are the ones you need to watch out for. To properly equip you with the tools necessary to spot a scam, here are a few of the common tactics these dishonest cheats will use.

Not Including VAT in the Quote

You’ll receive a quote usually over the phone for your lock. The problem is that they’ll often forget to include VAT. VAT is set at 20 per cent, at the time of writing, so essentially you’re adding a fifth onto the total bill. This is significant and by not adding it they could be influencing your ability to pay.

On a side note, they’ll often fail to include the fact that they’re going to charge you a fee for calling them out, the added cost of the materials, and the cost of labour. You can easily find your bill changing from £50 to £200.

Premium Rate Numbers

Your locksmith should be available from a local number. This keeps the phone bill nice and low and ensures that you aren’t paying more than you should. Some locksmiths will use premium rate numbers in an attempt to take more money from you, though. If you notice a locksmith using a premium rate number, forget about them and use the trusty Yellow Pages to find a locksmith instead.

Drilling and Removing

Sometimes your locksmith will attempt to turn a simple problem into a catastrophe. The lock which only needs some slight tweaking will suddenly turn into one that needs drilling and removing. This is just a way to make it more complex and lengthy so they can charge you more.

The difficulty is spotting when they attempt to do this when it isn’t necessary. The best way to avoid this is to look up the experiences of previous customers. They’ll soon post a review about it online.

Expensive Parts

Overcharging for parts when a job is supposedly more complex than it is isn’t an uncommon practice. They might pick up a lock from their van only to say it was a specialist lock which came by special order. Really it’s a standard lock they always use and it’s something you can pick up yourself at a fraction of the price.

Again, this is a dirty tactic which is hard to spot. This is where looking for a good locksmith by conducting research comes in handy.

The Internet

The widespread use of the Internet has made it easy for scammers to change their company names each week so nobody knows who they are. They’ll advertise really low prices for their services. This is where they can come to your house and suddenly the price is higher than expected.

You can’t do anything about this once it happens. Your best option is to look for long-term reviews of a company. If it has very few reviews the chances are that it’s a new company and it shouldn’t be trusted. The risk simply isn’t worth it.

Why ID Badges Are Fantastic For Business Security

ID Badges are often seen as something of a nuisance and none of us likes having to wear them when we go to visit a business or visit factories and stores as customers. It’s easy to think of ID badges as being a bit ‘Big Brother’ and of their enforcers as being jobsworths, but to do so is to miss the point of the ID badge and to overlook what makes them so important and so powerful. Here we will look at some of the benefits of ID badges, and particularly at what makes them so useful from a security standpoint.

ID Badges for Service

To begin with, let’s take a look at the basic idea of ID badges. Essentially an ID badge is a tool that enables you, your staff and your visitors to quickly identify a person and to know who they are and how they should interact with them.

ID badges worn by your staff for instance will greatly aid your visitors when it comes to getting help. This way they can quickly spot who works for your company and who they need to talk to if they have questions regarding the layout of your building or one of your policies. Rather than wandering around for hours asking the wrong people where room 4b is, they can quickly identify someone who can help and that way get to where they need to be.

During this interaction, ID badges will also help to make the conversation more natural and personal. ID badges of course give your staff the benefit of knowing the names of the people they are speaking to and vice versa. Thus you can have a friendly conversation using someone’s name and the customer/visitor is much more likely to be impressed with the quality of service they received. Of course this also has the added bonus of removing any anonymity: should your visitor be unhappy with the help they received, then they will be able to report the behaviour of that particular member of staff to you by name. Hopefully though the very fact that they’re wearing a name badge will improve the quality of service they aim to provide – as they’ll know that anything they say can come back to them.

For Security

But this is an article on security and thus we should be focussed on the security benefits of using ID badges. Of course here this gives your staff the ability to quickly identify when someone is in the building who hasn’t been authorised. If they haven’t been issued an ID badge, then they won’t have come through the main entrance and spoken to a receptionist and thus there is a chance that they will have broken in to the premises. This way a security guard or another member of staff can go and speak to that person and ask them why they don’t have a badge/advise that they go and get one.

Assuming that they then comply to avoid a confrontation, this means that everyone in your building should be wearing an ID badge and that you know precisely who has come in and out. By looking at how many badges you issue throughout the day and how many have been returned you can also know the exact number of visitors in your building at any time.

This in turn means that you can ensure that there is no one inside the building at the end of the day when you close up. It also means that if something goes missing or gets broken during a certain time, you will be able to see precisely who was in the building during that period and thus narrow down who could possibly have been responsible. And of course if you catch someone in the act of stealing, vandalising or trespassing, then you may be able to use the ID card as a means to identify them: even if they gave incorrect information you might have a photo of them to go on dependent on the form of ID badge you use.

On top of all this there are safety benefits to knowing who is in your building at any time too, all of which makes ID badges an incredibly good investment and a policy that’s worth being a bit of a jobsworth about.