Trading Standards warns the public to be vigilant regarding vehicle scams

As the coronavirus pandemic continues to advance, National Trading Standards officers are warning the public and businesses to be vigilant of scammers ripping off consumers.

Recently, a client of ours enquired about a call they received from someone claiming to be from the Motor Insurance Department (MID) stating that one of their vehicles was not insured on their database.

The client said they were instructed to go back and forth between the insurer and the MID with different codes, to be able to register the vehicles on the database as being insured.

From this information, we wondered about the call’s legitimacy and if they paid anything.

We were advised that if vehicles are not on a fleet policy then the insurer should be informing the Motor Industry Bureau (MIB), which maintain the records on the motor insurance database.

In this case, the NFU had recorded the new vehicle but had not informed MIB expecting the client to do so. The MIB were pleased that they had been contacted rather than the client merely passing over information when it may not have been them making contact.

Even if you are a fleet, commercial or motor trade policyholder, you likely have a single insurance policy that covers multiple vehicles. To help make sure that the motor insurance database accurately reflects the vehicles on the cover, some insurers allow customers to access and maintain their vehicles on the motor insurance database direct.

The MIB states the following on scams:

“You may have been cold-called by someone claiming to be from MIB or who says they got your information from the Motor Insurance Database (MID).

“They may be trying to scam you by saying that they have been instructed by MIB to call you about your accident claim, asking you to give information about any motor accidents you have been involved in, encouraging you to give false information to make a claim to MIB, or trying to get your personal data or banking details so that ‘your compensation’ can be paid to you.”

MIB only contacts:

  • Individuals or their legal representatives who have submitted claims for an accident with an uninsured or untraced driver.
  • A named defendant or third party in a claim.
  • The registered keeper of a vehicle that does not appear to be insured according to the motor insurance database. MIB will send a warning letter that sets out the immediate action required to stay legal and avoid getting a Fixed Penalty Notice from the DVLA.

MIB does not do the following:

  • Call any member of the public about claiming for motor accidents unless you have already submitted a claim to MIB.
  • Sell or give out the information held on the Motor Insurance Database to third parties for marketing purposes.
  • Ask for your banking details via the telephone.
  • Hold your email or telephone contact details on the Motor Insurance Database.

If you are concerned about a potential MIB scam, ensure that you speak to an expert before making any payment or revealing any personal information. Scams can be reported on the MIB’s website.

Posted in Ken Maggs, Scams.