Alarmed by an increasing number of consumer complaints about deceptive home security sales tactics, industry leader
(NYSE:ADT) has announced it will award up to $25,000 for proof of a company training its sales teams to be deceitful. The evidence must result in the successful prosecution of the offending company.
“ADT’s trusted brand is being exploited by swindlers and scammers who mislead unsuspecting consumers,” said David Bleisch, ADT General Counsel. “Victims end up having their ADT security systems unnecessarily replaced and are duped into signing new contracts with another provider.”
The fraud begins at the front door when customers are told false statements ranging from “ADT has gone out of business” to “I am here to upgrade your equipment.” Sometimes the scammers claim they are affiliated with alarm panel manufacturers. Before the customer realizes they’ve been cheated, a new security system has been installed and they’ve been conned into switching service to the company committing the fraud.
It’s usually a crime to use deceptive sales practices, especially when they are targeted toward the elderly. Recently, two sales representatives from a Utah-based security company were arrested in Missouri for misleading an elderly woman into making changes to the ADT system in her home and then charging a higher fee.
To keep from being victimized by security scammers, these tips are recommended:
- Ask for photo identification and/or a business card of who is at your door
- Call your current security company to confirm what you’re being told
- Don’t be pressured into agreeing to new equipment or signing a contract
- Request literature be left behind so you can study it before taking action
ADT already has video evidence from at least one company’s training session showing rogue representatives being taught to lie during sales presentations at customer homes. ADT hopes more evidence, obtained through cell phones, will come forward.