POLL: Maitland elderly on scam and con men alert
Maitland residents are not immune to scams.
FED UP: Aberglasslyn man Bob Parsons is fed up with having to deal with scammers on a daily basis.
It seems that every week brings a new scam and often the older members of the community are targeted.
Like many, retired motor dealer Bob Parsons is targeted in his own home, by landline, in emails and on mobile phone as the treacherous practice grows.
“We get scams three, four or even five times a week,” the Aberglasslyn man said.
“There isn’t a week where I don’t get one.”
There are the emails boasting lottery windfalls, bogus bank account problems and people posing as crash victims from two months ago – all of them asking for private information and account details.
Mr Parsons has avoided them all so far but is fed up with them.
“It’s an increasing source of aggravation and invasion on our lives,” he said.
“We get scam phone calls on the landline and scam emails all the time, but in the past three or four weeks they have started on my mobile.”
His advice is to hang up or delete the messages straight away.
“I take no notice of them I just click delete,” he said.
“And you’ve just got to ignore every number you don’t know [because] it’s the old thing – if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.”
Thrown into the mix is the worry of paying bills online.
“You do wonder about your details being out there but you just can’t function without PayPal or using your credit card online,” he said.
“The days of walking down the street and putting your cash on the counter are gone.”
Notorious travelling con men are operating in the Hunter.
The con men have been knocking on doors and offering to do odd jobs for cash, including bitumen work, pressure cleaning and sealing.
Central Hunter crime manager Detective Inspector John Zdrilic said the men, part of a group known to police and Fair Trading NSW, were unqualified and unlicensed to do the work.
He said police recently received reports that the men were operating in Aberdare.
The men also charged a 90-year-old Muswellbrook man $3000 to pressure clean the cladding on the roof of his home this month.
“It’s really important that we get the message out,” Inspector Zdrilic said.
“These persons are definitely not licensed to do this work.
“They can produce what appear to be quite legitimate business cards.”
Inspector Zdrilic said the men often told potential victims that they had materialleftover from otherjobs so they could do the work for a cheap price.
He said the con men often spoke with Irish or English accents and tended to prey on vulnerable people in the community.
“If these people approach anyone for work in the central Hunter then I want to know about it.”
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