PICS: Motorists warned to beware of NCT scam doing the rounds in Ireland
The penalty for driving with an invalid NCT certificate in Ireland is very severe.
Irish motorists have been warned to be aware of an increase in the number of elaborately forged NCT documents being circulated in Ireland.
Through a source within the industry, Irish automotive website myvehicle.ie has released an example of the type of forged documents currently being circulated and tips on how to spot the difference between the forged documents and genuine NCT certificates.
A steady black market has reportedly developed in Ireland for the fake NCT certificates, which make it easier for people to sell off their vehicles for a higher cost.
Driving a vehicle with an invalid NCT cert is an offence that carries a penalty of up to five penalty points, a €2,000 fine or even three months in prison.
A source who supplies invalid NCT certificates told myvehicle.ie: “I normally sell on demand, so it’s hard to put a number on it but I usually sell several a week.”
The source added that faking the documents was easy and suggested that “there are quite a few people doing it now”.
Myvehicle.ie supplied images of how the fake certificates compare to the real ones and tips on how to spot a forgery (see below).
For a start, check the registration number on the Cert or disk against the make and model of car.
In the fake example, the registration does not match the make and model of vehicle. You can check this by going to the following NCTS link and enter in the registration number and it should match.
The copy of the real NCT cert below shows just how hard it can be to tell the difference between a fake NCT cert and a real one but myvehicle.ie have pointed out some very telling differences noticeable between these two examples if you examine the document carefully.
The following, for observational purposes only, is just a comparison between these two particular certs and is not meant to establish the full range of differences or even if these differences constitute a fake or not.
Some other changes which may or may not indicate a fake document, meanwhile, are as follows...
Commenting on the circulation of the forged NCT certs, managing director of MyVehicle.ie, Justin Kavanagh, said: “It’s extremely worrying just how easy it now is to obtain a Fake NCT Certificate in Ireland, and an even greater concern is that the individuals that are purchasing vehicles with these fake NCT certificates are putting way too much trust in the NCT Certificate, by expecting a vehicle to be mechanically sound because it has apparently passed the National Car Test and trusting the mileage reading that is printed on the NCT Certificate, which in my opinion is not wise.”