Scammers posing as locksmiths costing Metro Detroit residents big money

Help Me Hank reveals key to stopping scam

BIRMINGHAM, Mich. – Scammers posing as locksmiths are costing some Metro Detroit residents big money. Help Me Hank investigated the key to stopping the scam and how to protect yourself.

When a Metro Detroit couple were locked out of their home, they called who they thought was their trusted neighborhood locksmith. But scammers showed up and left them with a big bill for what should have been a simple job.

Steve Stager is a reporter for an NBC station in Denver, but for years he worked behind the scenes at Local 4. His parents live in Troy, and they called Stager late one night, concerned that scammers had struck.

When they searched online to find a locksmith, they didn't find a trusted business, Birmingham Locksmith. Instead, they found a company using a similar name, which appears online when people search "locksmith" and "Birmingham."

What began as an issue of being locked out of one door became a slick, quick-talking sales pitch that cost the elderly couple $1,000.

The legitimate business has been on Woodward Avenue for 30 years, but some of his names are being used online. The calls are going to call centers, sometimes out of state, and the person showing up to help isn't the locksmith people think they called.

You can watch Hank Winchester's full story in the video posted above to learn more about how you can avoid becoming a victim of this scam.

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