Locksmith Scammers - Beware!
Australia's general public has recently been troubled by locksmith scammers - unqualified individuals that pose as licensed locksmiths.
This issue has stirred up many complaints and has been covered by both A Current Affair in Australia and FairGo in New Zealand on national television, with the intent to educate and inform the public.
Locksmith Scam - the breakdown
It is a meticulous scamming operation - these locksmith scammers have business websites and pages that will appear on Google search results due to their prominent advertising. Most of these scammer sites are .com domains - not .com.au - but the content of the pages are made to appear as locally relevant as possible, even with local maps and local phone numbers.
The scams focus on:
- Consumers in immediate need of emergency locksmith - people who lost their house keys, the house has been burgled, locked keys inside the vehicle, etc.
- Price of their 'service' - the scammers advertise very low prices on their websites to prey on unsuspecting consumers.
Be very mindful of whom you are trusting to solve your security issue
The local number that appears on the site will then be directed to a call centre (usually foreign), and a 'locksmith' will be dispatched. These 'locksmiths' will arrive in an unmarked vehicle and provide no identification, as they are usually unqualified, unskilled, unlicensed and uninsured.
In most cases, the door locks (or the security components involved) are destroyed and replaced with low-quality locks. The consumer is charged with an exorbitant amount of fees (in some cases up to 800AUD) and the scammers will provide an illegal and unbranded invoice for their 'service'.
Payment will usually be requested right after completion, and unfortunately, instances of threatening and intimidating behaviour have been reported.
John Barnes employs SCEC approved locksmiths with government security clearance, and our quality management system is ISO 9001 Certified. We take pride in providing the first-class service that all our clients deserve.
Our Master locksmiths and security personnel are licensed and possess the experience, knowledge, capabilities, and resources to fully-securing Australian homes and businesses. John Barnes has been proudly servicing Queensland families, businesses and the Australian government for more than 50 years.
*Full article on MLAA website