Scam alert: fake infringement email targets drivers

SCAM EMAIL: If you receive an email like this, do not pay any money and do not click any attachments or links. You should delete the email straight away.

Be wary of scam emails pretending to be infringement notices issued by a government authority such as the Australian Federal Police.

The “Traffic Infringement Notice” email and the website appear to be authentic, featuring convincing official design and branding and replicating official statements about the offence. The email includes a “see your traffic infringement” button, which links to a website where you are prompted to download a file containing details of a penalty notice. Do not download this file. It contains ransomware.

If you receive this email you should delete it. These messages are a scam and the ransomware could severely impact your system.

The scam emails and the website could easily be mistaken as authentic. Current examples circulating are generic and do not refer to the recipient’s name, address, vehicle or registered owner details.

The scam emails and the website could easily be mistaken as authentic. Current examples circulating are generic and do not refer to the recipient’s name, address, vehicle or registered owner details.

Please see these resources from the Australian Government on how to manage cyber crime:

What is ransomware
Stay smart online – avoiding scams and hoaxes

Have you received any scam emails like these recently?

Can you participate in a new driving study?

OPEN ROAD: Annually around 1,300 people die and 33,000 are seriously injured on Australian roads. Using a new research method, the Naturalistic Driving Study (NDS), this study aims to provide Australia with answers to some significant road safety questions.

OPEN ROAD: Annually around 1,300 people die and 33,000 are seriously injured on Australian roads. Using a new research method, the Naturalistic Driving Study (NDS), this study aims to provide Australia with answers to some significant road safety questions.

Car drivers are needed for Australia’s first Naturalistic Driving Study (NDS), being led by the University of New South Wales in collaboration with several other leading universities. This study is part-funded by the NRMA.

The aim of the study is to improve road safety in Australia by better understanding how people drive in normal and safety-critical situations.

For the study, 360 participant drivers will have their own vehicles equipped for four months with a compact data collection system that records their driving behaviour, the behaviour of their vehicle and their interactions with other road users. The equipment is designed so as not to damage the vehicle or interfere with normal operations of the vehicle.

All vehicles will be equipped with the data collection system at a designated installation site by qualified technicians in Sydney or Melbourne. During the installation process, participants will be invited to complete a series of questionnaires, two physical tests (grip strength and rapid walking) and some non-invasive vision tests.

After that, participants will drive their vehicle as they normally would and, after four months, complete an exit questionnaire and have the data collection equipment removed by a qualified technician.

Participants, who complete the study satisfactorily, will receive two (2) $125 Coles-Myer Shopping vouchers (one after installation of study equipment and one after removal of study equipment).

To be eligible for this study, participants need to:

  • ​be between 20 and 70 years of age;
  • hold a valid NSW or Victorian driver’s licence (full licence only);
  • own a registered passenger vehicle (sedan, coupe, hatchback, station wagon, or sports utility vehicle/four-wheel drive) or have owner permission to use a registered passenger vehicle; and
  • drive at least 10 trips a week.

To register your interest, and for more information, please visit the study website at www.a​nds.unsw.edu.au or contact Dr Wu Yi Zheng by sending an email to ANDS@unsw.edu.au​. Thanks.

Australian Naturalistic Driving Study FAQs

How do I know if my fuel is contaminated?

Issues with contaminated fuel are somewhat rare nowadays, however, if you are unlucky enough to be in this situation, repairs can be very costly. 

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PROOF OF PURCHASE: Although many people do not retain receipts, they can be helpful when making claims for contamination issues.

If you notice any of the following symptoms soon after refuelling you MAY have bought contaminated fuel:

  • Engine running rough or lacking power/performance
  • Engine harder to start than usual
  • Misfiring, pinging or backfiring
  • “Engine check” light illuminated

If you suspect that you have picked up a bad batch of fuel, your first priority is to take your car to your local mechanic or servicing dealer, for a check and verification.

If you are unable to drive your car to your mechanic, call our Road Assist team, who offer NRMA Members a quick check and advice or towing if assistance is necessary. 

Be sure to note the date time and location of where the fuel was obtained. A fuel receipt will also be handy.

Advise the service station where you bought the fuel from that you are experiencing problems following the last refuelling and that you will be making a claim against them for the repairs that may be  needed. 

Have you ever experienced contaminated fuel before? Was it a costly repair? 

Have any motoring related questions that you would like us to answer? Our Motoring Advice Team provides professional advice for NRMA Members. You can reach the team on 13 11 22 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm).

 

Wrong fuel woes- How to save on unwanted repair costs

An NRMA survey of more than 1,300 motorists has found almost a quarter of drivers have filled up with the incorrect fuel type. 

FUEL MIX UP -Repairs to fuel system and engine  can be very expensive!

FUEL MIX UP -Repairs to fuel system and engine can be very expensive!

Putting petrol in diesel cars appears to be the more common mistake than diesel in petrol cars because of greater familiarity with petrol cars. The larger diesel pump nozzles makes misfueling a little difficult.

Whilst this could be as a result of being new to the vehicle or simply being distracted while filling up, knowing what to do in this situation can save you thousands.

Serious issues that arise out of the misfueling (putting petrol in diesel vehicles) – safety (petrol is extremely flammable ), may cause  serious damage to fuel injection system and the engine, the resultant damage is not be covered  under warranty and the  insurance policies may not provide cover for the mistake.

Diesel fuel pumps operate on very fine tolerance at high pressures and is lubricated by the diesel fuel. When petrol is added to diesel fuel, the mix acts as a solvent, reducing lubrication. This can also cause damage to the fuel pump through metal to metal contact and create metal particles which can cause significant damage to the rest of the fuel system.

Serious engine damage may also occur due to detonation (knocking) caused by uncontrolled petrol ignition under a much higher compression pressure consistent with the diesel engine.

As a general rule, regardless of your vehicles fuel type, it’s important not to turn on the ignition or start the engine if you’ve filled up with the wrong type of fuel. Instead contact Roadside Assistance if you are an NRMA Member,who will arrange towing to a licensed mechanic/NRMA MotorServe for further assessment.

If you did not realise your mistake until you experienced performance problems or abnormal engine noises STOP and call for assistance – it may minimise further damage.

Never attempt to syphon fuel yourself. Apart from the safety risk, it is also an offence to pollute any waters with severe penalties imposed by the authority (EPA).

Vehicle owners can also prevent the use of misfuelling by installing aftermarket devices, such as SoloDiesel, which has been designed to block the narrower diameter petrol nozzle.

Have you ever used the wrong fuel type in your vehicle? How much did it cost you to fix your vehicle?

Have any motoring related questions that you would like us to answer? Our Motoring Advice Team provides professional advice for NRMA Members. You can reach the team on 13 11 22 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm)

What are CVT transmissions and how do they operate?

As car dealerships try to entice buyers to consider new cars with run out deals, we’ve had some calls from NRMA Members asking about CVT transmissions. Such as, what are they and how do they operate?

CVT is short for continuously variable transmission. Automatic transmissions rely upon planetary gears to operate and have a limited number of ratios. CVT on the other hand has very few parts and uses a system of variable pulleys connected by a belt to work. The resultant gear ratios are virtually infinite.

When a CVT equipped car accelerates, the pulleys vary their diameter to lower the engine speed as the car speed increases. This is the same thing a conventional transmission does, but instead of changing the ratio in stages by shifting gears, the CVT continuously varies the ratio.

Because there are no gears to tie a given road speed directly to a given engine speed, the CVT can vary the engine speed as needed to access maximum power as well as maximum fuel efficiency. This allows the CVT to provide better acceleration than a conventional automatic or manual transmission while delivering superior fuel economy.

Although CVT transmission design is not new, it has gone into production cars only recently. Its popularity with the car manufacturers has increased due its simple design and cost, better fuel economy and lower exhaust gas emissions.

Driving a Continuously Variable Transmission equipped car may require a little getting used to as the gradual changes in engine note during acceleration sounds like a slipping transmission or a slipping clutch, which can be signs of trouble with a conventional transmission. This is however perfectly normally for this type of transmission.

Have you heard about CVT’s before? Is this type of transmission important to you when choosing a new car? 

Have any motoring related questions that you would like us to answer? Our Motoring Advice Team provides professional advice for NRMA Members. You can reach the team on 13 11 22 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm)