MHBrown & Company is aware of, and is very concerned with, the ongoing mis-representation of legitimate locksmith services by certain groups of unscrupulous persons in and around many large cities in the US.
These groups have been posting THOUSANDS of phone numbers in both printed and online yellow page directories, many with incorrect addresses, these phony numbers are answered by “boiler room” style answering people who will quote a low price for emergency service, and then dispatch an unqualified person to take care of your locksmith emergency. Some after doing damage or even destroying your locking hardware will then charge you a very inflated price for this unsatisfactory service.
Big news last week the U.S. Postal service and other law enforcement agencies raided the offices of “Dependable Lock” in Florida. “Dependable Lock” is allegedly one of the most nortorious “phoney locksmith” groups in operation, with rip off artists in several states.
Check this link for info http://www.jaxobserver.com/2009/11/05/florida-based-locksmith-chain-raided-on-wednesday/.
These arrests, investgations and hopefully future convictions will not end the predatory practices of these “phoney locsmith” scammers, however it will make a huge dent in them. Now the authorities have a blueprint of how to go after them, we should see more action on this front.
Consumers still need to use due diligence when choosing a locksmith, whether for emergoecy service or any other security need. Remember when you choose a locksmith, you are giving them the authority to access your propety and valuables, you need to be sure you are dealing with a reputable, legitimate business. Do not depend on just the phone book, or internet for finding locksmith services.
Legitimate locksiths can be found at www.aloa.org as well as www.legallocksmiths.com . Once you locate a legitimate locksmith be sure their phone numbers are handy in the event of an emergency. When they arrive ask for identification, ask for references, and check them.
- Locked Out: Watch This Video So You Don’t Get Taken by a Locksmith (walletpop.com)
- Locksmith Scams (fraudpreventionunit.org)
- The Keys to Hiring a Reputable Locksmith (idnhhoffman.wordpress.com)