Over the past week Dublin residents have opened their hearts and wallets to help victims of Hurricane Harvey flooding in Texas. But some scammers are looking to exploit this tragedy. The Federal Trade Commission offers the following advice when giving:
- Donate to charities you know and trust with a proven track record with dealing with disasters.
- Be alert for charities that seem to have sprung up overnight in connection with current events. Check out the charity with the Better Business Bureau’s (BBB) Wise Giving Alliance, Charity Navigator, Charity Watch, or GuideStar.
- Designate the disaster so you can ensure your funds are going to disaster relief, rather than a general fund.
- Never click on links or open attachments in e-mails unless you know who sent it.You could unknowingly install malware on your computer.
- Don’t assume that charity messages posted on social media are legitimate. Research the organization yourself.
- When texting to donate, confirm the number with the source before you donate.The charge will show up on your mobile phone bill, but donations are not immediate.
- Find out if the charity or fundraiser must be registered in your state by contacting the National Association of State Charity Officials. If they should be registered, but they’re not, consider donating through another charity.