The Federal Trade Commission has issued a warning to commercial truck drivers about a group of government imposters who have duped small trucking operations out of $19 million since 2012.
Company Posed As Government Entity To Trick Truckers
According to the FTC, a group called “DOT Authority” has been contacting truck drivers and representing itself as the U.S. Department of Transportation. The group has conned truckers out of millions of dollars over several years by offering drivers help filing their federal and state motor carrier registrations — but forcing them to pay up to $550 more than they should have for the service.
The FTC also says that DOT Authority has been charging drivers up to $200 to recertify or to deactivate their USDOT numbers — a service that is free at the FMCSA website.
DOT Authority Accused Of Harassing Truckers With Robocalls And Texts
DOT Authority is also accused of using robocalls, emails, and text messages to threaten drivers with a $1000 fine if they fail to pay what the company says that they owe.
The FTC says that most of DOT Authority’s victims have been owner-operators or small family businesses with five or fewer trucks.
The FTC is currently in the process of suing DOT Authority.