Security Alarm Companies in Suffolk – 2016 Update

UPDATE: 21st January 2016

Since originally posting about rogue security companies back in 2012, it has come to our attention here at Suffolk Trading Standards that the issue has made an unwelcome return to the county. In recent days, we have received information from the Sudbury area via a Suffolk Police Crime Reduction Officer that a company has been cold-calling residents. The company allegedly state that the consumer has been selected for a ‘free burglar alarm’. All they had to do was pay a £300 installation fee.

Advice from Crime Reduction Officers at Suffolk Police and from Trading Standards would be to not purchase an alarm from any cold-caller, either on the phone or at your door. Instead, seek three independent quotes from NSI/SSAIB registered companies:

http://www.nsi.org.uk/directory/  & http://www.nsi.org.uk/information-centre/information-for-home-owners/

or

https://ssaib.org/security-provider-search/  & https://ssaib.org/page/approved-contractor-scheme/

However, if you have been contacted by a company offering something similar and would like further advice, contact Citizen’s Advice Consumer Service on 03454 04 05 06

ORIGINAL 2012 POST:

We are receiving a high number of calls from consumers within Suffolk who have been cold called by companies offering to install burglar alarms.  The consumer have allegedly been duped out of sums of up to £4,000!

The traders in question have been making initial contact by cold calling people (by phone and on the doorstep), informing them that their property is eligible to receive a free alarm, and requesting an appointment for one of their representatives to visit in person.

During the visit, the sales reps present a range of worrying statistics on crime rates in the area. The elderly, who appear to be the primary target in this unscrupulous campaign, are often persuaded to part with their cash following suggestions such as that without a panic alarm button fitted with the burglar alarm, if they were to collapse in their homes they could be left for days before help arrived.

They have even gone as far as telling the consumers that should they be the victim of a burglary, the Police do not attend.

Following the high pressure selling the consumer is signed up to their “free alarm”, for which they have to pay a service fee that works out to be nearly £4,000 for a 5 year contract!

Everyone looking to install a home security system should consider their options carefully, and never sign contracts with, or hand-over cash to, unsolicited salespeople without first getting a comparative quote.

Within Suffolk, some of the local Borough & District Councils recommend the following Personal Alarm Services:

Babergh District Council – http://www.babergh.gov.uk/housing-and-homelessness/sheltered-housing-and-other-support/types-of-housing-and-support/community-alarm-service/

Forest Heath District Council – http://www.forest-heath.gov.uk/info/870/community_safety/364/lifeline_alarm_service

Ipswich Borough Council – http://www.ipswich.gov.uk/hears

Mid Suffolk District Council – http://www.midsuffolk.gov.uk/housing-and-homelessness/sheltered-housing-and-other-support/types-of-housing-and-support/community-alarm-service/

Suffolk Coastal District Council – http://www.suffolkcoastal.gov.uk/atoz/telecare/

About suffolktradingstandards
Suffolk Trading Standards is working towards creating and fair and safe trading environment. By creating empowered consumers, that are armed with the knowledge to stop 'rogue traders'.

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