Transport select committee warns drivers of fake websites

MPs are calling for the government to advise motorists of the damage using fake websites to sign up for services like tax can do

MPs have rallied for the government to do more to stop innocent motorists using fraudulent websites to pay for essential services such as road tax.

The transport select committee appealed for higher powers to regulate illegal websites that are being set up to impersonate official websites such as the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency, the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency and the Vehicle Certification Agency.

The AA has also voiced its concerns, saying it had received complaints from customers, saying impersonator websites claiming to speed up the application process and charging huge fees to motorists need to be stopped.

The DVLA said it had been contacted directly by Transport for London (TfL), asking the authority to send out letters to drivers who had used an unofficial website to pay the congestion charge, warning them that their fine had not been paid.

Labour chairwoman Louise Ellman said: "The Department for Transport must ensure that its current re-organisation programme for these agencies delivers high quality services that benefit everyone.

"We welcome greater information sharing across the motoring agencies and the expansion of online services that we found were well-liked by many customers."

Shadow transport secretary Mary Creagh agreed the onus should not be on driver groups identifying these fake websites, but on the government. "David Cameron's incompetent government has presided over digital tax disc chaos, delays to driving tests and rip-off copycat websites," she said.

"Drivers deserve better, and this report is clear that ministers need to stamp out copycat websites and ensure motoring agencies have the tools they need to keep rogues off our roads."

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