The Associated Locksmiths of America (ALOA) estimates that every passing day, over 200,000 people make emergency calls for a locksmith. Ideally, those experiencing emergencies will be in a desperate situation and will not care to check whether the locksmith is qualified and competent for the job.
One of the ALOA officials, Jim Hancock, during an interview described the fraudulent tendencies in the locksmith industry as "a scam that is only growing,"
Imagine working on your locks and after a while, your home will be burglarized without any sign of forceful entry! You will be mesmerized –wondering what happened. It is possible you dealt with a fraudulent locksmith who systematically copied your key while working on your locks. Probably, he provided the copy to burglars that went in when you are away!
Don’t get it twisted, the majority of locksmiths are genuine professionals that can never compromise the security of their clients. However, there are a few ‘bad eggs’ trying to destroy the reputation of the hardworking professionals. So here are some tips to help you avoid locksmith scams.
Find a reputable locksmith in advance. You will not be under pressure for results when doing an independent review of reliable locksmiths in your area.
Try to interact with three to four locksmith companies and select a reliable company that checks off all the boxes. Save their contact number. However, upgrading to a keyless lock is a better option in case you have been losing your keys. It will save you from a lot of stress – fumbling for keys, unauthorized key duplication, broken or damaged keys, etc.
Be wary of any locksmith using the 800 numbers. Most likely, you are dealing with an out-of-state call center that will outsource the job to another unreliable company. No matter the excuse, any company using the 800 phone number is a sign they are not reliable.
It is better to check if your state is among those requiring licensing for every locksmith. Every locksmith must have a license to operate in these states: Alabama, California, Connecticut, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Nebraska, New Jersey, Nevada, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia.
If your state is among those mentioned above, you should ask for identification and license when the locksmith arrives. To avoid wasting valuable time, ask the locksmith to come with his ID and license when scheduling the job. Alas, no fake Locksmith will honor such a service invitation.
Also, you should be aware that the locksmith has the right to ask for your identification. You have to be ready with every piece of evidence proving ownership of the home or vehicle.
No matter the circumstances, do not allow the locksmith to drill your lock. Drilling should be the last option after the locksmith has tried various methods. A good locksmith will give you the option of rekeying or replacing the locks rather than drilling. Drilling is recommended for opening high-security locks.
A trustworthy and legitimate locksmith will arrive at the location with a customized van or an official vehicle. The truth is that scam locksmiths usually operate with unmarked service vehicles. Therefore, you should consider this as a red flag whenever you have an emergency.
Inexperienced locksmiths using out-of-state call centers can do a lot of harm to your locks and security system. In addition to that, they can compromise your security. Be watchful of all the tips discussed in this article. If you want experienced, legitimate and knowledgeable locksmiths for your home, office, or car, call Top Atlanta Locksmith. We go to great lengths to ensure you receive top-quality service.