SORN scammers

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Martin R
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SORN scammers

Post by Martin R »

I'm sure many of you will believe you'd never fall for such a scam, but I just did :(
The tax falls due on two of my vehicles at the end of the month.
One car has a valid MOT until until July, so I was able to tax it online easily.
Next, one of my motorbikes, whose MOT expired in November, so I needed to SORN it.
I've never SORN'd a vehicle before, so I just followed an online link to the web site which appeared identical to the Gov one I'd just used to tax the car.
On completion, I was a little surprised to find there was a £27.50 charge to SORN the bike but, I paid it.
I then received an email stating my SORN was being processed but the email wasn't from .gov so I thought it strange.
I then found I'd been duped onto a scammer's web site, emulating a gov website...
I'm now stuck on hold (35 minutes and counting) trying to speak to my credit card provider :evil:
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Pymmie
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Re: SORN scammers

Post by Pymmie »

If as I suspect it was sent via email ALWAYS press the senders
name and the real email address is shown.

Let’s hope this post helps at least one person in the future

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Martin R
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Re: SORN scammers

Post by Martin R »

It wasn't sent via an email, I simply attempted to apply online but the Gov website said I needed to SORN as the MOT has expired.
There was no apparent link to the SORN section of the Gov website, so I did a quick Google and followed the link to what I believed was the Gov DVLA website. It looked pretty well identical.
I thought it a bit odd to pay for SORN but having never done it before, I just thought "oh well".
Only when I received the confirmation email that I realised I hadn't been on the Gov web site.
I've now been stuck on hold for over 3 hours trying to speak to Lloyds credit cards to cancel the card as the scammers now have my details...
I have however since been on the correct Gov DVLA website and SORN'd my motorbike...
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Re: SORN scammers

Post by Mark1Stu »

Sorry to read of your experience Martin and many thanks for sharing it with us.

Like you, I say to myself I won't fall for a scam but it's clearly very easy to fall into their ever evolving trap. My vigilance suitably topped up!

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Re: SORN scammers

Post by colin7673 »

I'm sorry to herd this Martin, it's a shame but there are a lot of unscrupulous people out there.

Had you gone back to the beginning to Tax page there is an option their to SWON a vehicle, but like most things on the government web page nothing is easy to find.

I hope your Credit card company was helpful and you didn't end up out of pocket.

But thank you for sharing
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johnw
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Re: SORN scammers

Post by johnw »

Pymmie wrote: Fri Apr 09, 2021 5:49 am If as I suspect it was sent via email ALWAYS press the senders
name and the real email address is shown.

Let’s hope this post helps at least one person in the future

John P
Email addresses can be very easily spoofed! The actual email address, not just the name shown. Surprising how many IT managers think they are somehow secure! One field you need to present from your server to the next. Anyone running their own sendmail system at home can do it. It is an extra step though, and 99% of scammers these days don't bother fortunately. Emails are still handed off from computer to computer based on trust.

Web addresses are a bit more difficult, so people usually go for a similar official looking name as was the case here.

Anyway, on a lighter not, maybe we could have a biker meeting! I would like to see Grant on his KH750 with expansion chambers!
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Re: SORN scammers

Post by jvcarrier »

Quite a common scam, first met it when applying for a visa for the US, the site look like a genuine government site but was only a forwarding scam, charging for what was a free service. The biggest giveaway is the charge!

There seems to be a very blasé approach to such scams, the authorities should shut them down and prosecute but clearly cannot be bothered.
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Re: SORN scammers

Post by VFK44 »

These can be borderline legal - if they take your submitted details and apply them to the government site, you will receive your SORN or Visa as expected and they can claim the payment is for the "services rendered". A check on the small print may reveal these details...
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Re: SORN scammers

Post by Keith »

VFK44 wrote: Fri Apr 09, 2021 4:21 pm These can be borderline legal - if they take your submitted details and apply them to the government site, you will receive your SORN or Visa as expected and they can claim the payment is for the "services rendered". A check on the small print may reveal these details...
I don't often agree with Stephen, but in this case he is absolutely correct. You have paid for a service (someone SORNs the vehicle for you), therefore the "charge" is quite legitimate.

Please keep us posted, I'd be interested to see if you can get a card chargeback successfully.
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Re: SORN scammers

Post by Grant »

Keith wrote: Fri Apr 09, 2021 5:03 pm
VFK44 wrote: Fri Apr 09, 2021 4:21 pm These can be borderline legal - if they take your submitted details and apply them to the government site, you will receive your SORN or Visa as expected and they can claim the payment is for the "services rendered". A check on the small print may reveal these details...
I don't often agree with Stephen, but in this case he is absolutely correct. You have paid for a service (someone SORNs the vehicle for you), therefore the "charge" is quite legitimate.

Please keep us posted, I'd be interested to see if you can get a card chargeback successfully.
Very clever then and really not a scam, but a misleading service cleverly distracting you, although I feel for you Martin and probably not something you want to hear, but, I think it is very clever sales really and although to us you would feel "Scammed", you haven't really been scammed. I remember that you used to be able to get fined for not SORNing a vehicle and most would pay, but I read all about it when they tried to fine me, and, it wasn't really a fine, it looked like a fine but the legal side of it just meant it was an invoice and most would pay, but if you took it to court you would win because there was no law passed about it, maybe it's changed since then I don't knowImage, this was back when it all 1st started this SORN malarkyImage
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Martin R
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Re: SORN scammers

Post by Martin R »

Whilst I can appreciate it borderline scamming, as they possibly do offer a "service", they have deliberately impersonated the DVLA website and even appear above the legit DVLA listing in a Google search.
After yet another 1 hr 10 mins stuck on hold trying to speak with Lloyds Credit cards (bearing in mind I'm calling the UK from Australia!!) I still haven't been able to talk to anyone.
Even if SORN REGISTERS claim to be a "service" I don't trust them, particularly knowing they have my card details.
Having given up on calling lloyds, I discovered on my mobile phone app, I could block the card.
The SORN REGISTERS payment was showing as "PENDING" so I hoped I could block the payment.
However, this morning, it is showing as "PAID".
At best, I've lost £27.50
However, assuming my attempt to block the card has been successful, I'll need to replace the card when I return to the UK in early May.
As it's impossible to actually speak to anyone on the phone, that'll mean going to a branch, if I can find one...
I have written an official complaint to Lloyds.
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Re: SORN scammers

Post by VFK44 »

I remember my father telling me about press adverts for "a seat for the Coronation - five guineas" but instead of an invitation to the Abbey, people were sent a very cheap folding stool.
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Re: SORN scammers

Post by Grant »

VFK44 wrote: Sat Apr 10, 2021 5:00 am I remember my father telling me about press adverts for "a seat for the Coronation - five guineas" but instead of an invitation to the Abbey, people were sent a very cheap folding stool.
Image You have to admire the cleverness of people tricking your brainImage...Unitll your the one that has been trickedImage
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Re: SORN scammers

Post by Oxymoron »

When checking the mot history of a car for sale recently, I found that the web site was asking for payment to check the history.

I thought it strange and realised I wasnt on the official DVLA site, but one with a similar title, which was listed on Google before the government site!
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Re: SORN scammers

Post by VFK44 »

Keith wrote: Fri Apr 09, 2021 5:03 pm I don't often agree with Stephen, but in this case he is absolutely correct.
I'll mark it in my diary in case it never happens again.

And, Happy Birthday, Keith! You must be getting mellow in your old age.
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