Officials are worried a number of misleading websites, which looked like real New York State websites, "significantly overcharged" many residents.

On Wednesday, New York Attorney General Letitia James announced her office shut down two websites that impersonated the New York State Department of State (NYSDOS) and "significantly overcharged" users for services provided by NYSDOS.

Fake New York State Websites Overcharged New Yorkers

The fake websites, which looked like the real website, were created by Thomas Romano and his company, Steamin’ Weenie LLC, officials say.

Deceiving Website Overcharged New Yorkers By 1,250 Percent

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Attorney General James confirmed she shut down both websites. She also announced her office secured $44,387 in penalties from Romano and his company, Steamin’ Weenie.


“Impersonating the New York Department of State as a way of defrauding business owners out of their hard-earned money was not only deceptive, unfair, and misleading, it was illegal,” Secretary of State Robert J. Rodriguez said."

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The ruling also prevents Romano and his company from using any government logos, seals, or other similar iconography to deceive consumers.

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