Companies across Shropshire are being ‘conned’ out of tens of thousands of pounds a year by a clicking scam, according to a Telford-based copying business.
Adrian Casey, managing director of Unique Copiers Ltd in Telford, is calling on businesses, schools and councils to be more vigilant about what is known as the “triple click method”.
The triple click method sees unsuspecting organisations pay three times more for their colour copies than what they should actually be paying.
Mr Casey said there was a simple test that businesses and schools could do to make sure they were paying the right amount for one colour copy rather than three.
“All you have to do is print off a counter report that shows you the number of copies made,” he said. “Then run off one colour copy and then print off another counter report.
“If the number has increased by more than one colour copy you are being conned.”
Mr Casey has visited a number of local schools and authorities around the UK to talk to staff about their copying costs.
He said many people who had been given the hard sell by smooth-talking sales representatives or were complacent with existing suppliers thought they were now tied into a contract.
“However, fraudulent contracts are not enforceable so it is possible to get out of the contract and recover the cash that you have been conned out of,” he added.
“This problem and massive overspending is widespread across education, corporates, councils and the NHS.
“When clients have realised the huge overspend, they have challenged their supplier and have had tens of thousands of pounds refunded because they know that otherwise the client would take them to court.
“The photocopier may need to scan more than once but it doesn’t mean the client should pay for three copies.
“It’s shocking that despite court cases exposing companies carrying out this con it is still happening several years on.”
The triple click method is not uncommon in the industry. In 2014 an investigation by the Mirror highlighted that office equipment company Apogee was charging schools three times more than it initially appeared to.
Mr Casey has been in the photocopying industry for almost 30 years during which time he has built up a trusted and successful business.
“We’re not looking to point fingers at anyone but the triple click is taking advantage of honest, hardworking companies, taking the money from school budgets and council treasuries, all of whom have important things to spend their money on and it’s wrong,” he said.
If you suspect that you’re paying too much for your photocopying then get in touch with Unique Copiers firstname.lastname@example.org who will be able to advise you on a machine and price plan to suit your budget.