Red Light Camera Scam Raises Red Flags

Sometimes it’s hard to tell the red flag in a scam when it’s a red light.

Virginia police are warning of a new scam involving red light cameras. Being from Maryland I know that red light cameras are everywhere. I mean, everywhere. For those of you that have not experienced the alarming horror of these cameras let me paint a picture for you…

You’re barreling unnecessarily fast down a main stretch of road and the light turns yellow.

You move your foot off the gas peddle to the brake for a moment.

Until you remember you have something fragile in the backseat or an item that could potentially go flying forward if you stop as hard as your about to. You know, an item like your steaming impatience to get to wherever you have to get as soon as possible.

Your foot dances in a twitch like fashion, back and forth from the gas to brake until you decide to gun it.

Peddle to the metal, baby! You can make it! Just get across the line before the light turns…




Some of you may have found that previous explanation comical (which is was intended to be) but in all seriousness this happens all too often. Especially in the MD/DC/VA area. Which is precisely why red light cameras have descended upon the area like a swarm of Locusts. These cameras are strategically placed to catch and potentially prevent unsafe and unnecessary red light runners.

Well,Virginia police are warning of a new scam to hit the Vienna area where someone is calling people to tell them they were caught on camera running a light and need to pay the find. If they don’t pay they are threatened with arrest. Luckily for them the caller will happily take a credit card payment over the phone!

To me this sounds ridiculous because if you live in the D.C. area chances are you have gotten a red light ticket before and know that it comes in the mail (attached with a lovely picture of you running the light with a scrunched up face doused with nervousness with a dash of confidence).

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However, my first (and only — because I’m scared straight now of red lights) red light ticket came when I was a youngster around the age of 17. If a person called now and said I ran a light and this was now the procedure to handle the ticket I wouldn’t know any better if I wasn’t the type of person to question everything.

So far no one has reported being scammed yet. The warning is out there, folks! Take caution – when driving and making payments over the phone.

Original Story

If you have been scammed and would like to file a scam report, please click here.

2 thoughts on “Red Light Camera Scam Raises Red Flags”

  1. I have not been scammed by someone pretending to have caught me going through a red light–  I live on Long Island– NY–  there are cameras all over–  waiting for people to go through YELLOW lights—  When these cameras on Long Island were new– I did not expect to get a ticket– when I made a right turn–the light turned YELLOW–  there is never  any oncoming traffic at this light–  the other side is a dead end– and there were NO sign for NO turn on red sign— when I turned–the light turned RED–  I got a ticket in the mail- 3 weeks later with a picture — I went to their website– and saw the video–I planned on not paying the $50 ticket– and going to court to tell my side- but my husband sent the payment through the mail with my credit card information–  Now I stop at EVERY YELLOW light–  I hope this won’t cause more unnecessary traffic accidents!!

    • On the flip side, I once had a client that did not want to be bothered with getting a smart pass and intentionally ran through the toll gates when they didn’t have cash on hand and got a $75 picture in the mail each time. In one day they did that four times.

      Those cameras can make a lot of money!


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