In the United States, a home burglary occurs every 13 seconds. Sometimes, even the locksmiths that you hire to prevent these issues are out to rip you off.
Thanks to the Internet, scammers are now targeting people who are in need of assistance on their home or commercial door locks.
“My wife and I were like, who was in our house?” asked Ernie Mitropolous of Roselle, Illinois. “You almost feel like you were robbed, you were violated in a weird way. You feel like wow, someone was in our house that wasn’t legit.”
Mitropolous is referring to a company that he thought he knew, but which ended up being a scammer.
When Mitropolous turned to Google to find a locksmith, clicking a link that looked as though it would go to the website of Action Lock and Key. Through the site, he hired a man named Brandon Ball, who quoted the homeowner $50. After completing the job, however, he charged $100 more.
Furious, Mitropolous called Action Lock and Key to complain, only to find out they had never actually been at his home.
Action Lock and Key has since resolved the issue with online imposters and are the number one search result for their company name.
“You are entrusting one of us to come into your place of business or your home with everything you own, said Andy Maglio, owner of Action Lock and Key.
According to ABC Chicago, this problem has been happening all over the country and law enforcement is aware of these scammers.
“They impersonate other locksmiths, put their phone numbers on another locksmith’s Google listing,” said Mike Bronzell, former chairman of an industry task force.
If you’re looking for lock assistance on commercial replacement doors Roselle has to offer, although the real Action Lock and Key appear as the number one search result now, you should still be aware of fraudulent businesses online. Make sure that you look up on Google Maps the exact address that’s located on the listing so you can tell a physical shop exists. You should also ask the locksmith who arrives to perform the job for their license and their Permanent Employee Registration Card; these are required to be on their person at all times. It’s also recommended that you make sure they have a few different types of keys and not just one.
Contact Action Lock and Key directly if you are in need of lock assistance.