Beware of bogus debt collectors in Brighton, police warn. They’re ours, water firm says
Bogus debt collectors pretending to be from Southern Water have targeted pensioners in Brighton and Newhaven, Sussex Police warned today (Friday 19 February).
But it turned out that the debt collectors weren’t bogus at all. They were working on behalf of the water company.
Earlier the force said: “Police and trading standards are warning residents in Brighton and East Sussex not to be taken in by callers claiming to be from a debt collecting company acting on behalf of Southern Water.
“On Wednesday (17 February) a card claiming that money was owed was left at an address in Tumulus Road, Saltdean, while the occupant, an elderly lady, was not there.
“On the same day a man called at the home of another elderly lady in Iveagh Crescent, Newhaven, claiming that she also owed money. She did not part with any money and the man left a card.
“Both cards had the name of Orbit Debt Collections on them.”
And this evening Sussex Police said that the “Southern Water debt collectors were genuine – but still be alert for bogus callers”.
The force added: “Police continue to warn Sussex residents to use caution about callers claiming to be from debt collecting companies acting on behalf of public utilities or any other undertaking.
“However, Southern Water have this evening (Friday 19 February) clarified that a company called Orbit Debt Collections are in fact working for them at present.
“Police had at 3.50pm on Friday issued a warning about two such callers in Sussex, with the agreement of Southern Water.
“If you, or in particular any elderly person you know, are ever approached in such circumstances, still always use proper caution and check their bona fides.
“If in doubt, do not hand over any money and contact the police on firstname.lastname@example.org or call 101.”