A door to door undercover investigation conducted by Local 6 ’s Mike Holfeld found homeowners willing to open their doors to people that "seemed legitimate."
Local 6 sent two producers into area neighborhoods dressed as cable repairmen and deliverymen.The uniforms had no company logos yet both men and women opened their doors even though they admitted they were not expecting anyone.
One woman who we will call Patti, said the producer’s uniform fooled her.
"You know he did look legitimate and I probably shouldn’t have answered the door," she said.
The door-to-door investigation found only one home where the owner asked "who’s there?"
That came through a home security intercom. The homeowner declined to comment.
Lorraine Marcano of Apopka says the investigation is a wake-up call. She says she needed a locksmith after a thief kicked down a door leading into her garage.
Instead of just searching internet ads she found a company that vetted companies and employees.
"You don’t know if that Yellow Page ad could be a single person working in his garage out of a truck," she said.
She chose asktheseal.com, a Tampa based consumer reporting company that has conducted and cleared criminal and professional background checks of 200 area service companies.
An AskTheSeal.com company will send an email complete with employee profile before they arrive.
CEO Ed Marchiselli says many companies have employees with criminal pasts.
"We’re talking sex offenders, convicted burglars, forgery, armed robbery and stalking," he said.
Marchiselli says the screening process makes sure the companies are insured, bonded and have a good reputation.
He says the selling point is "peace of mind" but that just because a company is not listed with him doesn’t mean they are a bad company.
"They (consumers) don’t have to take a sales person’s word for it, they have a third party’s seal of approval and they know the company is properly vetted as well as the person coming to your home," he said.
The companies with AskTheSeal.com aren’t the only ones offering employee profiles and vetting.
The Safelite windshield repair company sends advance employee profiles and photographs the day before they arrive for the repair appointment.
Debbie Castro had a Safelite repairman come to her home last week. Castro says the email and profile were a bonus.
"They sent me an email, the technicians name, a little bio on him who to expect and when."