Google has taken action against unofficial congestion charge payment adverts which have been duping the public, after TfL (Transport for London) badgered the search engine to remove them.
And remove them Google has, stripping them from its search engine, where people have been unwittingly finding the websites and using them instead of TfL’s own payment site.
The BBC reports that every day around a thousand drivers used the “copycat” sites, which make themselves seem as if they are affiliated to TfL in some manner. They charge up to £8 more than the amount people should be paying, in the name of unnecessary services (or indeed services that just don’t exist).
Worse still, some of the dodgy sites don’t even pay the congestion charge on, keeping all of the customer’s money, and subsequently leaving them further out of pocket with fines from TfL for failure to pay.
In case you’re wondering, the official payment website is here.
TfL's Garrett Emmerson told the Beeb: "We have taken further action with Google which means the removal of misleading advertisements for congestion charge payments from Google.”
“This has radically reduced the number of customers who have fallen victim to exorbitant fees for so-called additional services that either don't exist or are already provided by TfL for free.”