Scams are sadly a very common thing, and many people fall victim to them. With more people now using the internet and going online, we continue to learn and develop our skills and require the internet to do things like booking things, renewing driving licenses and more.

Unfortunately, scammers take advantage of this through copycat websites. These often look similar to official sites but charge a fee for something that may be available for free, or for a much-reduced amount. Age UK has a great Scams Awareness Update for this to help with everything you need to know such as what to do, current scams and more. Tackling this is an important thing to do – and here’s how:

 

  • For documents issued by a government agency, start by entering gov.uk into the address bar at the top of your internet page. This will take you straight to the official site and cut out the copycats.
  • Search for what you’re looking for in the search box of www.gov.uk e.g. passport renewal, over 70s driving licence, GHIC etc. Click on the results within the gov.uk page.
  • If you search for a document renewal/application outside of www.gov.uk, be wary of the adverts at the top of the search results.
  • For any websites outside of www.gov.uk, check the page for any disclaimers such as “Please note we are in no way affiliated with the government of the United Kingdom or the DVLA (Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency). We are a third party processing agency that charges a service fee for additional benefits”.
  • If making a payment or sharing personal information, make sure the website is secure by looking for the closed padlock in the address bar.
  • Never click on adverts on social media for renewing or applying for documents. Scammers use your internet searches to place adverts on social media.
  • Never click on links in unsolicited emails or texts inviting you to renew or apply for documents. Always go independently to gov.uk.

 

View the full Scams Awareness Update.

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