State warns customers about bogus driver’s license forms

November 2, 2011

By Staff

NEW — 6 a.m. Nov. 2, 2011

State licensing officials urged residents to beware of a bogus website claiming to be the “official provider of Washington driver license forms.”

The website came to the state Department of Licensing’s attentions after customers came across the language and called the agency.

The website asks customers to pay $24.95, although the message is not clear about what the payment is for — but the payment does not renew a driver’s license.

“The only ‘official provider’ of Department of Licensing forms is the Department of Licensing, and they are free,” agency Director Alan Haight said in a statement. “I can also ensure our customers that our agency website is safe, secure and offers a lot of time-saving services.”

Customers can ensure the website is legitimate by checking the URL.

Official Department of Licensing sites include in the address. Browsers on secure portions of the website, such as the driver’s license renewal section, display a padlock icon or a similar image, and a https:// as the prefix of the address, to denote the area is secure.

Some search engines can also return advertisements in the form of sponsored links — and then lead users to websites claiming to be something other than advertised.

“Folks should always be vigilant while using the Internet to make sure they know who they’re doing business with,” Haight said. “The surest way to get to our website is to type in to your Web browser address bar.”

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