Scam blue badge websites spark Trading Standards warning

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Copperfields Hair Studio, on Hayling Avenue in Baffins. Picture: Google Street View PPP-171118-153719001

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A warning over fraudulent websites claiming to deal with blue badge parking permits has been issued by West Sussex Trading Standards.

The copycat websites appear to offer an easy way of applying for or renewing a blue badge but instead charge more than necessary and have no authority to issue the badges.

Residents who use these sites will still have to submit their applications to West Sussex County Council and pay the genuine £10 fee to cover the application.

Complaints have been received by the Trading Standards team from elderly and vulnerable residents who have unnecessarily paid excessive amounts for a blue badge.

Richard Sargeant, Trading Standards team manager, said: “We advise anyone applying or renewing a blue badge to use the council’s or the Government’s official website.

“Using a copycat website may result in your data being sold on to third parties. To ensure that you and your data is safe, always use an official ‘.gov.uk’ website.”

If you have concerns about copycat websites contact Trading Standards via Citizens Advice on 03454 040506 or use the online reporting form at www.westsussex.gov.uk/tsreport.