Sunday 15 January 2012

Dodgy doorstep security advice from Siemens

Siemens Meter Services, a division of Siemens plc, claims to be the UK's leading independent expert provider of metering services. They are accredited with CORGI and Ofgem to provide gas meter reading and meter operations to gas suppliers, such as British Gas.

Because gas meters are often installed indoors, meter readers or engineers occasionally require physical access to a customer's home. For that reason, meter readers - regardless of which company they work for - usually carry an identity card.  After all, you wouldn't want to let a complete stranger into your home, would you?

But, what if someone calls round with a forged identity card?  Or, what if you have no idea what a genuine identity card should look like?  Siemens offers the following doorstep security advice to allow you to verify the identity of the caller:
Siemens Metering Services at your door
All of our meter readers and meter engineers have passed our thorough security screening. Everyone has to carry an identity card showing their name and a recent colour photograph. If you have any doubts at all about the identity of the caller, then please call the telephone number printed on the identity card for verification.
Unfortunately, there's an obvious flaw in this advice: If a fraudster has gone to the effort of forging an identity card, there's nothing to stop them printing their mate's phone number on it.