Ottawa police are warning the public about aggressive door-to-door salespeople that have been reported in the Kanata and Stittsville areas.
Const. Lori Fahey, with the community police centre for Kanata and Stittsville, said representatives for an alarm company are asking alarming questions and using pushy tactics.
“They’re asking questions like ‘Do you live alone? Do you often go away on holiday?’” said Fahey. “The tactics are pushy.”
There have also been complaints of questionable methods, such as false claims and data being provided by door-to-door salespeople to “encourage residents to purchase,” said Fahey.
“We all want to be good neighbours, we all want to be friendly … but do not feel pressure to answer questions,” she said. “You don’t have to let them in.”
She spoke to the head of the alarm company, which is based in Hamilton, who in turn talked to his employees about their behaviour, she said.
Residents should call the police if they have questions, concerns or if sales people won’t leave their property.
“Unless you called for a service, you don’t have to feel obliged” to let anyone in the door, said Fahey.
There have been other reports of a water-testing company sending sales reps door-to-door. The salespeople are telling homeowners their water isn’t safe to drink and that they should buy a water filter system, said Fahey.
“City water systems are perfectly safe,” she added.
It’s important for residents to do their own research on a product, she said, adding homeowners can ask the salesperson to leave a pamphlet or advertising material.
“Do not feel pressured to answer questions or to allow a stranger into your residence,” said Fahey. “And feel free to terminate the conversation when you no longer wish to engage with them.”
If a salesperson refuses to leave, call police at 613-230-6211.
The police recommend the following tips:
* Lock your doors and use the door viewer when possible.
* Avoid leaving items of value in plain view of doors and windows. Shut your blinds and curtains when away from home.
* Report suspicious activity to the police.
* Trim trees and shrubs that could easily hide intruders.
* Have adequate exterior lighting.
* Improve home security with deadbolts or other locking mechanisms.
LOCK CAR DOORS
Residents are also being reminded to lock their vehicle doors.
A number of thefts from vehicles were reported in the Kanata area over the past month, including in the Morgan’s Grant area, along Chimo Drive, Young Road, Eagleson Road and McClintock Way, said Fahey.
She added only one home break-and-enter was reported and that was in the Glen Cairn area.
To contact the Kanata and Stittsville community police centre, call 613-236-1222, ext. 2001.