INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (WOWO): Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller is warning Hoosiers of charity scams after the typhoon in the Philippines.
He says many legitimate charitable groups are springing into action, but so are scammers.
“Hoosiers have always reached out to help those in need and this provides an opportunity for those who will once again try to turn consumers’ good will into a profit,” Zoeller said. “During times of tragedy, it is even more important to be smart and make sure your donations are supporting legitimate relief efforts.”
Zoeller is encouraging you to make sure relief organizations are reputable before donating and he advises that you follow the five tips below, before making a donation:
- Donate to established organizations with a track record of organizing and providing disaster relief;
- Initiate the donation yourself, rather than responding to online, direct mail or phone solicitations asking for money;
- Watch out for charities with similar sounding names. Some phony charitable organizations use names that are very similar to those of respected organizations.
- Pay by check. Don’t send cash or a wire transfer as these are common ways scammers use to rip-off victims and avoid detection by law enforcement.
- Visit www.CharityNavigator.org to assist in identifying legitimate relief organizations and determine how much of their donations are used to help victims rather than on administrative overhead.
For more information on avoiding charitable scams or to file a consumer complaint visit www.IndianaConsumer.com.