On Your Side: Avoid scams when donating to disaster relief

Published: Apr. 6, 2023 at 6:12 PM CDT
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(KY3) - The FBI is issuing a charity fraud warning following those deadly tornadoes in Arkansas.

Do your homework before you give. Use a website like https://www.charitynavigator.org/ or https://give.org/.

Plug in the charity’s name. You’ll see if it’s a real charity and a breakdown of its tax records. This way, you know how much of your donation goes to the cause. The folks in Arkansas need your help. Make sure your money is placed in the right hands.

“It looks like nothing I’ve ever seen. It looks like a bomb went off,” said Jessica Franklin, with the FBI in Little Rock.

Be wary of crowdfunding websites you see in your newsfeed.

“You see a lot of things on social media. People sharing these sad stories and trying to get you to donate quickly,” said Franklin.

Make sure you know and trust the individual collecting the money.

“We always recommend using a credit card, not wire transfers or gift cards. After you donate, we recommend monitoring your financial banking account to ensure there are no fraud charges on those accounts,” said Franklin.

Disaster relief groups usually prefer money over items. They can make your dollar stretch.

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