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MSE News: Fake EHIC websites shut down

This is the discussion thread for the following MSE News Story:

"The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has shut down a host of websites that charged travellers for applying for what should be a free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) ..."

Read the full story:
Fake EHIC websites shut down



  • dzug1dzug1 Forumite
    13.5K Posts
    10,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    I wonder how long it will be before they are back under new names. A day or two maybe?
  • I really don't understand why people would want to knowingly rip people off on a service/ provision that is freely available. I do despair.

    Right, off back to LaLa Land. :p
    :mad: Hindsight is a wonderful thing...
    :j One of Mike's Mob! yea!!!
    inally settled full balance of RBS personal loan ahead of schedule on 10th August 2010 :money:

  • spirospiro Forumite
    6.4K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper
    Just found one, it came up the top of the Google search
    IT Consultant in the utilities industry specialising in the retail electricity market.

    4 Credit Card and 1 Loan PPI claims settled for £26k, 1 rejected (Opus).
  • I have just been caught out by one of these sites, which must have set up again quite quickly!
    I know it was stupid and I'm usually careful, but
    Was distracted by some personal stuff, typical! Have emailed through google checkout, threatening to
    Contact Trading Standards. I know I'm probably going to have to
    Chalk it up to experience, but I'm worried about my information!
  • aerostaraerostar Forumite
    1.7K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    spiro wrote: »
    Just found one, it came up the top of the Google search

    I see that there is a disclaimer on the bottom, but then who starts at the bottom or even gets there when looking at the site.
    This is what it says

    This website is not connected to or affiliated with the National Health Service, The Department of Health or any other official Government body. You can apply independently and free of charge for EHIC by visiting the official website which can be found HERE. Westland Securities Limited are a third party data processor for EHIC card applications.

    Regardless of the disclaimer, they are just scammers however you look at it.
  • Hello,
    A few minutes ago I searched Google to apply for a European Health Insurance card and proceeded to a website that asked me to pay £14.99 (and an optional £5.00 for faster processing). It wasn't until the payment was accepted that I discovered the card is fact free via the NHS and there has been an ongoing problem with these fraudulent sites for quite some time.

    As I'm a new user I'm disabled from adding a link to the offending site here, but it's called EUHealthCard dot org, and it also happens to be a boldly featured and endorsed website right at the very top of the Google search page (which makes me slightly disgusted, also for the fact that Google seems to have had their hand slapped over endorsing these kinds of sites in the past).

    Firstly I'd like to know the steps I can take to getting my money back immediately, despite the site itself explicitly stating that under no circumstances do they issue refunds (of course they don't, it's a scam. And I doubt a harshly worded e-mail stating I know what they're up to will sway them at all).

    Obviously I feel stupid for falling for such an old trick without first properly doing the research, and £14.99 may indeed be a small price to pay for a lesson learned. But what I'm mainly concerned about now is that a scam artist officially has my card details and I have no idea how to stop them taking that money, as well as any other amounts in my account they may wish to help themselves to.

    Please advise me - I've been stung like the fool that I am but surely this isn't something I should simply tut and forget about.

    Thank you.
  • malkie76malkie76 Forumite
    6.2K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    It's not actually a scam, they just complete the forms for you and charge you a fee.
    It's no different to the Post Offices 'check and send' services they charge you for, or the companies who charge you for reclaiming bank fees on your behalf.
    Legal team on standby
  • AHARAHAR Forumite
    984 Posts
    Part of the Furniture 500 Posts Combo Breaker
    Forget the £14.99 and remember this:
    Those links in the yellow box at the top of a google search are to the search results what ad breaks are to TV programmes.
  • Noticed my EHIC had expired so went down the google route to renew it and nearly paid £14.99 to renew. Only when I got to final page and was about to hand over the money did I get suspicious. Note: I am a retired IT person and very savvy about checking these things but even so I nearly got caught .... god help those who aren't as cautious as me.

    Time for a reminder on front page of the news letter?

    Phil, Hampshire
  • luciluci Forumite
    5.9K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts
    It was in this week's email, in the very first article. How much clearer does it need to be?
This discussion has been closed.
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