OFT to investigate copycat scam websites
The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) have opened up an investigation into websites that charge people for government services that are available for free, or lower prices, such as European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) applications, applying for child benefit and tax rebates.
The OFT have already closed down a number of these copycat EHIC websites last summer, but it appears that there are still some in the system that need rooting out.
The plan is to widen the investigation and shut down sites passing themselves off as official government sites, and effectively charge them with "unfair commercial practice".
Cavendish Elithorn, from the OFT, says: "It is important that companies are clear about the service they are offering, and do not trick people into paying for something that they can get for free or much cheaper on government websites.
"We will be considering whether any of the sites under investigation are misleading consumers."
So if you're being asked for money from a government website, don't immediately assume that this is exactly the kind of thing those greedy swine would do, but rather, check your options as you may well be getting hoodwinked out of your hard earned pennies.
Okay? Now give us a tenner.