Spain's Directorate-General for Traffic (DGT) has announced that it will no longer be posting traffic fines to businesses which own vehicles or lease them long-term, including car hire companies. Individuals will, however, continue to receive their notifications by mail as they always have done, unless they have a digital certificate. The system changed on 1 November and companies are now notified of fines via DEV (Dirección Electrónica Vial).
This means that all companies who own or are leasing vehicles long-term will need a DEV address and will have to provide the DGT with an email address and/or mobile phone number in order to be advised that a notification has been sent.
To register with the DEV, firms need a digital certificate. If they do not have one, the DGT can assign a DEV address to a company but will not send out notifications by other means, so the firm will have to check regularly to make sure there are no pending notifications.
The Dirección Electrónica Vial (DEV) is an electronic mailbox where anyone can receive notifications from the DGT and it has the same legal validity as a paper copy. Individuals can also register with the system if they wish to do so, but in the case of legal entities it is obligatory.
Meanwhile, the DGT has issued a reminder that it will never send notifications about traffic fines by email. “It is always by post, by DEV or digital certificate for those that have them,” it said.
This warning is to remind people that there are many fake emails pretending to be from organisations like the DGT which are an attempt to spread malware (malicious software). In this case they appear to have come from the Ministry of the Interior and the heading could be something like “Vehicle blocked, fine not paid”. Anyone who opens the email will see that they allegedly have an unpaid traffic fine and can see the details if they click on a link. If they do that, however, the malware will be installed on their computer.
“Never click on a link, and never respond to these emails,” said sources at the DGT. “Delete the email. It is phishing”.