SD&G – The Stormont Dundas & Glengarry Detachment of the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) has issued a warning to the public that the water treatment scam has surfaced in the area again.
On April 6, SD&G responded to a report of a fraud in North Glengarry Township. The victim in the matter lost thousands of dollars after an individual contacted him claiming to be a water treatment business. The victim agreed to have the service done and have the reverse osmosis system installed at his residence.
On April 8, a person claiming to be a debt consolidator made arrangements to meet with the victim, stating they received his name from a list of people who were victims of scams related to air conditioning, furnace, and HVAC installations in the past and was attempting to assist him with consolidating his debts with the services.
The SD&G OPP intercepted the individual with the victim at a local bank and arrested a person involved. Investigations into both incidents are ongoing.
Under the new laws in Ontario, certain door-to-door sales are banned: air cleaners, air conditioners, air purifiers, duct cleaning services, furnaces, water filters, water heaters, water purifiers, water softeners, water treatment devices, and bundles of these goods and services. There are many ways to prevent these types of fraud such as:
- Be suspicious if you are approached for the repairs or work.
- Check identification and references of the company.
- Make sure the contractor is licensed.
- Get at least 3 written quotes for work that you need completed.
- Ask for an itemized bill for the repairs and materials.
- Do not give a cash deposit.
- Get a contract for the work being completed.
- Make any cheque payable to the company name and ensure the cheque is written in a way that can’t be altered.
If you are not sure of the situation you are in, ask for the individual to come back and get a phone number. Consult with a family member or close friend about the work and the price that is being suggested. If you feel the people attending your property are trying to intimidate you and are putting pressure on you, ask them to leave. Write down any information you may observe about their description, number of people, and the vehicles that they are using, especially a licence plate. Call 1- 888-310-1122 to report them to the OPP immediately.