Officials at the Wisconsin Department of Transportation’s Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) are concerned Wisconsin citizens are being duped by private firms or marketers who created websites that look official but misrepresent the DMV.
Kristina Boardman is deputy administrator for the department. “There are nonofficial websites out there. They’re not affiliated with the government. They have a disclaimer on them. They’re perfectly legal. They don’t always have the up-to-date most accurate information. They are ‘for profit’ organizations and they charge for forms.”
While the mock websites are not illegal, Boardman says, the information they’re selling is actually available for free from the state DMV. She urges consumers to check closely for the correct Internet domain suffix. The address should end with the ‘.gov’ extension.
Boardman says they aren’t aware of motorists being specifically solicited by anyone, but marketers hope people inadvertently stumble upon the wrong website. “If you do a search for Wisconsin DMV, you’ll get a number of results,” she says, and people do “stumble upon these (mock sites) by clicking on the wrong link.”
The for profit commercial websites usually contain a ‘.com’ extension. They charge added fees and Boardman says they might not offer the most up-to-date accurate information.