North residents are being reassured that proactive measures are being taken again by both police and Highland Council trading standards to beat doorstep crime in the region.
Operation Monarda has been renewed this year in the interests of keeping vulnerable people safe and empowering local communities to deter bogus callers and rogue traders.
Perpetrators tend to target victims due to a perceived vulnerability such as age, gender or disability.
Bogus callers and rogue traders will sometimes offer to carry out work that is uneccessary and charged inflated prices. Victims are often pressured into paying and sometimes they are driven to the bank, building society or post office to withdraw cash on demand.
Recent anti-crime measures have involved police working with the DVLA and Sepa to stop and check more than 100 vehicles at road checkpoints, during which various offences and breaches of legislation were detected.
Police have also visited more than 60 banks, building societies and post offices throughout the Moray Forth basin, offering advice and support to staff to prevent bogus workers obtaining money from vulnerable people.
A number of builder merchants were also visited to raise awareness of such crime and encourage anything suspicious to be reported to police.
An active partner in this work is the independent charity Crimestoppers who have issued more than 300 items of promotion material during the last week in the Highlands.
Angela Parker, national manager, Crimestoppers Scotland, said: “Many victims are elderly and vulnerable and the impact of this crime can be devastating to their lives and their family.
“We would urge anyone with information to contact Crimestoppers anonymously. Call 0800 555 111 or online at crimestoppers-uk.org.”
Chief Inspector Mairi Macinnes said: “?Members of the public are encouraged to use the services of a reputable contractor and do not engage in any business agreement with doorstep callers, regardless of how persuasive or professional they may seem.”