Police in Caithness are urging residents to be on their guard following reports of bogus workmen operating in the area.
Area Inspector Nick Clasper said: “We do not recommend dealing with cold callers offering building work or maintenance and would certainly warn against handing over money without being completely sure the person you are dealing with is genuine.
Those responsible for crimes like this are taking advantage of people in our community and have demanded an exaggerated sum of money for the minimal work they have completed.
“Legitimate workmen would not ask for payment in this way. Do not feel pressured into making on-the-spot decisions.
“Take your time to check credentials to satisfy yourself that they are a legitimate business with a good reputation.
“This kind of activity will not be tolerated, and police will continue to work tirelessly with our partners to put an end to these incidents.
“Doorstep crime can affect anyone but we know that the elderly can be particularly vulnerable. We will do all we can but I would also urge neighbours, family and friends to look out for members of our communities who could be vulnerable to these unscrupulous operators.”
Anyone with concerns about suspicious people or vehicles operating in their area should contact Police Scotland on 101.