A scam website is trying to con disabled Kingston residents out of money for parking badges, the council has warned.
The website, which is designed to resemble the official government portal, charges users an extortionate £49.50 to apply for a blue parking badge, which are free from most councils.
The scam site, Blue Badge Online, says they offer ‘an assistance service’ but does not appear to provide any assistance beyond completion and payment.
The reality is that there is no need for disabled residents to pay any fee when applying for blue badges.
Councillor Andy Johnson-Creek, cabinet member for trading standards at Kingston Council, said: “I urge residents to stay away from websites such as these which prey on the elderly and vulnerable in our community to part with their money unnecessarily.
“Blue Badge applications should be free and I urge all residents to stay away from this misleading website Blue Badge Online.”
The website has garnered 58 complaints against it in the last two years, according to the national Citizens Advice Consumer Services database.
If you have used Blue Badge Online please contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 03454 04 05 06 for help and advice.
Residents can apply for Blue Badges for free via www.gov.uk/apply-blue-badge
Picture courtesy of Wiki Commons, with thanks