Where is your Australian Passport advice?

Looking up information about Australian passports the other day I noticed the following sponsored link.

Dodgy passport information URL

The URL listed looked wrong to me. Australia doesn’t allow domains straight on the ‘.au’, only as second level domains. There is no www.AustralianPassportAdvice.au. But I wonder how many people realise this?

So, is is ethical to advertise a URL that is not the same as the one that the viewer is directed to? And is it also the responsibility of the group serving the advertisement (Google in this case) to check this?

The actual site is a ‘.com’ domain. It promises to help Australian citizens with all things related to passport registration. Just call the 1902 number and be charged $5.50 a minute. I think I’ll give it a miss. 🙂

APA discaimerIf you make it to the bottom of the page, small print in a colour very close to the background colour, says:

This service is not connected with, or endorsed by, The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. APA has no professional qualifications or experience related to the subject matter and we recommend that you contact DFAT for any information relating to passports.

The official Australian Passport site can be found at: www.passports.gov.au

(Which doesn’t work if you leave off the ‘www’ or if you use the singular ‘passport’)

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