Trading standards warns of telephone tricksters offering solar panel surveys

Phone scam warning. Library picture.
Phone scam warning. Library picture.

A warning has been issued about the latest telephone scam offering a free survey to have solar panels installed.

Beds Trading Standards has received a spate of reports from householders who say they have been contacted by the Bedfordshire or Bedford ‘advice centre’ asking them to have a survey carried out by one of their agents.

In some cases, people have been told a representative is already on the way to their home.

Trading standards officers are unable to find any trace of the advice centre and believe the calls are a scam.

Councillor Brian Spurr, who oversees community services, said: “These callers may try to offer you an opportunity that shouldn’t be missed by saying that it is only available for a short time, and to intimidate people into making a hasty decision and handing over personal and financial details.

“However, if you are interested in having solar panels fitted to your home, our advice would be to shop around by contacting legitimate local businesses and never take what an unsolicited telesales caller tells you for granted.”

The Trading Standards team is advising residents when receiving such calls to:

>Never pay money or give your bank account or credit card details over the phone.

>Never give your personal details, including your age and date or birth.

>Never be intimidated into making a quick decision.

>Never express an interest by asking the caller to call back later, as you may be identified as a possible target for a future scam attempt.

Anyone who has received one of these calls or believes they have been targeted by any other type of scam should contact Trading Standards on 03454 040506.