"Local Locksmith Scammers"
The Locksmith community all over Canada & the US has coined the term "Local Locksmith Scammers" for a phenomenon that appears to involve persons impersonating a Locksmith for the purpose of extorting money from people in a time of distress.
The term has been so coined because of the fact that the "scammers" utilize internet services to appear local and gain an advertising advantage targeting a specific service need - lockouts.
In a typical episode, a person who has accidentally locked him or herself out of a home, calls directory assistance and simply asks for the number of the nearest Locksmith. Through the advertising genius of Google, Telus, etc., a company can pay a fee to ensure their telephone number comes up first in just such a situation, and that phone number is conveyed by the 411 operator. The consumer, believing he or she is calling a local company, unwittingly calls a call
center thousands of kilometers away and receives a very reassuring promise, such as "We'll be there in 20 minutes and the fee will be $20.". Believe it or not, some people have waited 4-5 hours for someone to fulfill that promise. When a "Locksmith" arrives, usually in a personal vehicle with out-of-province license plates, he doesn't even try to pick the locks. Instead, he explains that the locks are a high security model and cannot be picked. He will have to drill the locks and replace them. The price is exhorbitant.