Unfortunately for British motorists car tax scams have been around for a while. Criminals prey upon drivers by using threatening or urgent language in their convincing-looking scam messages to unwittingly convince motorists into handing over sensitive information including bank details. Crooks are posing as the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) to try and get hold of this information. Emails and text messages are sent to drivers usually with messages about car tax payments.
Typically the messages are s about refunds, overpayment or a failed payment which is urgently required.
These messages often contain official branding and have words such as DVLA or car tax in the URL.
All these details could see drivers hand over their private information to criminals who could empty their bank account.
The DVLA said: “We don’t send emails or text messages that ask you to confirm your personal details or payment information, such as for a vehicle tax refund.
“If you get anything like this, don’t open any links and delete the email or text immediately.”
The firm also warned drivers about fraudulent websites which are posing to be the motoring agency.
“Beware of misleading third party websites passing themselves off as DVLA.
“These sites might, for example, offer to help you apply for a driving licence, tax your car or connect you to our contact centre.
“These sites will often charge additional fees for services that you can get for free or at a lower cost on GOV.UK.
“To try and pass themselves off as genuine, these sites might include ‘DVLA’ in their web address (URL).
“They might also design their site to appear as if it’s DVLA – for example, using DVLA’s old ‘green triangle’ logo, which we no longer use.
“Don’t be fooled by these sites – even if they appear at the top of search engine results. Always double check you’re using GOV.UK.”
Top tips to protect yourself and others
- Only use GOV.UK so you can be sure that you’re dealing directly with DVLA.
- Never share images on social media that contain personal information, such as your driving licence and vehicle documents.
- Report online scams to Action Fraud.
- Report misleading adverts to search engines.
- Keep up to date with internet safety – read more about online scams and phishing, and how to stay safe online.
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