OOIDA warns of potential U.S. DOT text scam

January 4, 2023

Tyson Fisher


The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association is warning truckers of a potential phone scam posing as the U.S. Department of Transportation.

OOIDA member Scott Moderson received an odd text on his phone. The text advised him that there has been “an error with your USDOT.” He was told to call a number “to become current and keep driving with no interruption.” Naturally, this had Moderson concerned.

text scam

“I was like, ‘Something’s wrong, I think,’” Moderson said.

Moderson did an internet search of the phone number and saw some red flags. That is when he called OOIDA to find out what, if anything, is going on with his authority.

Tom Crowley, a regulatory specialist with OOIDA’s Business Services Department, said this appears to be another scam.

However, he has not seen too many text scams like this one. Crowley said the DOT will send a letter or maybe a phone call, but he has never heard of the department texting people.

“The DOT will not text you,” Crowley said. “So if they get a text message, it’s a scam because the DOT does not text you.”

Carriers are required to provide their phone numbers to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. That makes the number public knowledge and ripe for the picking for potential scammers.

Crowley suggests truckers set up their authority using two phone lines: one to list on FMCSA’s website and another low-key number to give out to potential customers.

Some scammers offer to update MCS-150s for up to $300. However, OOIDA updates MCS-150 forms for $25 or a driver can do it themselves for free.

If any drivers feel they received a scam text message, they can call OOIDA’s Business Services Department at 816-229-5791. LL