Drivers have been urged to be vigilant over a horrific scam that could cost you your licence and thousands of pounds.
Motorists have been warned about a driver scam – involving the rise in bogus car insurance companies that are looking to tempt new drivers to get insured with them by offering too good to be true deals.
The warning comes after thousands of learner drivers prepare to pass their tests, following more than a year of disruption to their driving tests as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
Eight months ago DVLA issued a warning to drivers as online fraudsters started targeting drivers.
And now the Insurance Fraud Bureau (IFB) has issued the warning in the hope that new drivers take extra caution when shopping around for car insurance quotes.
Stephen Dalton, head of intelligence and investigations at the IFB said, “The last thing new drivers need right now is to risk losing their car for no insurance because they’ve been duped by a scammer on social media.
“Drivers must carry out basic checks to make sure they’re buying car insurance through a trusted provider, or they’ll be making a very expensive mistake.
“I encourage anyone who’s seen evidence of an insurance scam to report it to the IFB’s confidential Cheatline online or on 0800 422 0421.”
A spike in the number of bogus ‘deals’ being promoted on social media has caused a drivers scam concern for the IFB – with many scams using a technique called ‘ghost booking – in which fraudsters pretend to be insurance brokers who are selling unrealistically cheap and fake policies, often to younger drivers.
Motorists are warned that they could pay hundreds of pounds for something which is merely a photocopied fake policy on a piece of paper.
It is advised that drivers check the company they are buying the insurance from before handing over their money. Using price comparison sites like GoCompare can help motorists find reputable companies, as they have just released their best overall car insurance provider.
This particular driver scam is particularly concerning as when victims try to claim, following a car accident, they realise their policy is invalid and they have no cover.
As a result, they would be forced to fork out the repair cost, which can run into thousands of pounds. In addition, they are breaking the law by not having legitimate insurance cover and risk a penalty on their licence.
Uninsured drivers can also have their vehicle instantly seized and are likely to receive six licence points. They may also face court, where they might receive an unlimited fine and a driving ban.
Meanwhile, Mark Magee, head of driver policy at the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) warned new drivers about the importance of using genuine insurance firms. “
He said, “As well as ensuring you have the skills, knowledge and understanding attitude to drive safely, having valid insurance is of the utmost importance when you drive on your own.
“Check to make sure insurance brokers are genuine before parting with your money,” he added.
To report evidence of an insurance scam contact IFB’s confidential Cheatline online or call them on 0800 422 0421.