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Beware of Toll Road Billing Scam

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Morning commute: Toll booth

Morning commute: Toll booth (Photo credit: soumit)

In Orange County, there’s been a lot of confusion in recent months as to how to pay to use local toll roads. In the first few weeks after the Transportation Corridor Agencies removed toll booths and switched to a cash-free payment system, the number of toll violations spiked to about 15,000 a day, reported the Orange County Register. Drivers who think they may owe the toll agency, however, should beware of an email billing scam.

Nationwide, drivers have been receiving a phishing email with a logo mimicking the design of E-ZPass, the agency responsible for managing electronic tolling services on the East Coast, that reads, ‘You have not paid for driving on a toll road. This invoice is sent repeatedly, please service your debt in the shortest possible time.’ Representatives from both Transportation Corridor Agencies and E-ZPay have said these agencies did not send the emails, reported the Los Angeles Times. Those who receive the email are urged not to open it, respond to it, or download attachments.

Phishing is becoming an increasingly common way for hackers to steal information from and spy on people. In 2012, almost every incident of online espionage involved some form of a phishing attack, according to a survey by Verizon Communications that the Los Angeles Times reported on. The FBI urges people to report potential e-scams to the Internet Crime Complaint Center.

For those of you in Orange County still wondering about how to pay your tolls, you can get a transponder, which will debit an established amount, or pay online. If you’ve received your first violation and pay it within thirty days, the TCA will wave its penalties-but only until Labor Day.

Have you ever received a phishing email?

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