The Better Business Bureau of Alaska, Oregon and Western Washington, along with the Washington State Attorney General and the Washington State Secretary of State have issued a warning to be on the alert for such scammers. They recommend that you be leery of callers soliciting charitable donations who:
- Demand donations using threats, aggressive tactics or deadlines.
- Only accept cash donations or checks made out to them personally.
- Can’t explain what kind of relief will be offered, how it will be distributed, who will benefit, when it will be allocated and what percentage of donations benefit causes.
- Search engine results from unknown or untrustworthy websites.
- Unsolicited emails, instant messages and social media posts from unknown senders.
- Videos or news stories with unusual or shocking headlines.
- Call 1-800-332-4483
- Visit “Information for Donors” at http://www.sos.wa.gov/charities/donors.aspx
- Visit “Give Wisely” at http://www.sos.wa.gov/charities/givewisely.aspx
The Better Business Bureau also provides good advice at http://www.give.org/.
If you feel that you have been a victim of a scam, report is to the Washington State Attorney General’s Office at http://www.atg.wa.gov/file-complaint. You can also report your experience on the Better Business Bureau’s Scam Tracker at http://www.bbb.org/scamtracker/alaskaoregonwesternwashington.
Better Business Bureau: