The Driver Vehicle and Licensing Agency (DVLA) has taken the step of tweeting to specifically warn motorists in the UK to beware of spam texts and emails pretending to be from them. Instead they are convincing attempts by criminals to extract money from drivers.
The warning had examples of the kind of scams being orchestrated against drivers which included texts stating a refund was due to them, and others asking drivers to pay tax.
When they follow the link they are taken to a site where they are told their bank details are required in order to pay money back to them.
Instead those details are used to take money from the driver’s bank account.
The scams and the websites themselves can be incredibly official looking and convincing.
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The link included space for drivers to pass over personal information such as their bank details.
A phishing email warned it is “illegal to drive your vehicle until you’ve taxed it”, scaring road users into passing over sensitive data.
The email stated: “We sent your DVLA bill, and we still haven’t received payment.
It added, “Tax your vehicle – START NOW” with a link to a malicious website and a warning that untaxed vehicles risk a fine up to £240.
Road users should also avoid downloading any attachments sent on scam emails or clicking on links.
GOV.UK states: “Some websites, emails or phone numbers look like they’re part of an official government service when they’re not, or claim to help more than they actually do.
“Some make you pay for things that would be free or cheaper if you use the official government service.
“Search on GOV.UK to find official government services and phone numbers, for example, if you want to apply to the DVLA for a driving licence.”