Wiganers given bogus official warning

A FRESH warning was issued today to Wigan householders about the menace of bogus water board officials.

A favourite ruse of burglars and con artists, the visitor pretending to come and check a victim’s home over plumbing problems remains as rife today as it was 20 years ago.

This week the Consumer Council for Water called on consumers to be extra vigilant against distraction burglars or bogus callers.

Around 30 such crimes happen in England and Wales every day, and a number of these criminals use the pretence of being from a utility company.

CCW chairwoman Dame Yve Buckland said: “We want to make sure that everyone has the information they need should someone unexpectedly come knocking, and we have a section of our website www.ccwater.org.uk to help people protect themselves against bogus callers.

“Anyone can go to our website; choose their utility suppliers, and print off a list of contact phone numbers along with our list of top tips to keep near the telephone.

“Those who would feel safer with more protection against bogus callers are encouraged to register a password beforehand with their water or energy company. This is then quoted by the caller as proof that they are from that organisation.”

Advice includes keeping doors on the chain, asking for a visitor’s ID and, if there remains doubt, asking them to leave and even ring 999.