The holidays bring out the best in people, and many charities count on end-of-year generosity from donors to meet the needs of those less fortunate. Sadly, scammers know this and prey on unsuspecting consumers who don’t do their homework when giving money to charities. Scammers solicit by phone and email, or post links to fraudulent charities on social media sites with names similar to those of legitimate organizations. In some cases, scammers even pose as legitimate charities, in one variation of the so-called imposter scam.
Western Union and Better Business Bureau launched BBB Scam Stopper to help consumers reduce their chances of becoming a victim of common scams. “We urge donors to give thoughtfully, and to be wary of scams this holiday season,” said Art Taylor, President and CEO of BBB Wise Giving Alliance. “It’s important to check out a charity first, and make sure you are giving to a charity that will use your donation wisely.” BBB’s give.org has reviews of more than 11,000 charities.
“Resist rushing. If a charity is legitimate, they’ll accept your donation any time,” said Shelley Bernhardt, Director of Consumer Protection at Western Union.
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