Better Business Bureau of Southern Arizona is warning consumers about bogus charities that could be set up under the guise of assisting victims of the Monument Fire.
“Sadly, con-artists come out of the woodwork at times like this,” said Kim States, president of the local BBB. “Scammers follow the headlines to stay on top of what’s going to get to the hearts and wallets of people who want to help.”
Many scam artists will contact consumers and businesses by phone, mail, or door-to-door solicitation and use high-pressure sales tactics to get donations. Some will go as far as setting up Websites to get your money.
States says the best way to protect yourself is not react to high pressure tactics.
“Take time to verify the legitimacy of the appeal,” she adds. “If it’s a legitimate charity they will take your money just as willingly tomorrow or next week.”
BBB offers the following tips:
- Get the full name of the organization that is soliciting to ensure the charity you are contributing to is the one you think it is. In an attempt to fool consumers, some scam artists set up charities under names that sound very similar to mainstream relief organizations.
- If you’re giving to a charity that promises to provide relief to victims, make sure the organization is experienced in disaster relief. There are many logistics involved with getting relief to victims, (more…)