Florida is warning motorists about a scam that could cost them big right before the holidays.
The Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles said in a news release that a company is sending emails, pretending to the DHSMV and seeking payment for a fake traffic ticket.
In the emails, drivers are accused of a traffic violation, then told they must pay the fraudulent citation by a certain time or face a daily late fee. There is a link for drivers to submit payment. The DHSMV said that although the payment link appears to be inactive, anyone who believes they may have fallen victim to this scam should refute the charge and contact their bank to take appropriate protective steps.
In an example email provided by the state, the company accuses a driver of making an illegal right turn on red at an intersection in Miami. The email requests payment of $78 within three days, or a $50 late fee will be charged for each three additional days the payment is late.
Motorists should note the following, the state said:
• The state Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles and county Clerks of Court do not send citations via email or require payment of citations via email.
• Traffic ticket numbers always are composed of seven alpha-numeric digits, while the fake citation numbers are six digits.
If you think you may have encountered this scam, the state asks you contact your local Clerk of Court and the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles immediately.
Fake lotteries. Repair scams. Reverse mortgages and long term care insurance.
From spotting scams to sorting out legitimate financial offers from hustles, state officials are running workshops in Palm Beach County this week to help protect seniors financially.
Florida Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater said the Department of Financial Services, in partnership with local law enforcement, will host free “Be Scam Smart” workshops. The idea is to educate seniors, their families and caregivers on topics including scams and identity theft, as well as financial issues such as reverse mortgages, long term care insurance and more.
To register for a free workshop, visit www.MyFloridaCFO.com/Safe or contact the Division of Consumer Services toll-free at 1-877-693-5236. Walk-ins are also welcome, officials say.
Financial Protection Workshops
Tuesday, August 23 – Belle Glade
10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
West Senior Center
2916 State Road #15, Belle Glade, FL 33430 Register | Directions
Wednesday, August 24 – Lake Worth
10:15 a.m. – 11:45 a.m.
Mid-County Senior Center
3680 Lake Worth Road, Lake Worth, FL 33461 Register | Directions
Thursday, August 25 – Palm Beach Gardens
9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.
North County Senior Center
5217 Northlake Boulevard, Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33418 Register | Directions