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Tips to avoid falling victim to scams

04/23/2014


The Honolulu Police Department has not received reports of donation scams related to typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. However, it is not uncommon for dishonest individuals to set up scams in the wake of large-scale disasters.

If you would like to make a charitable donation, the safest way is to contact a known, established charity directly. Write out a check in the organization's name or authorize a credit card payment. Never make a check out to an individual. Avoid cash donations if possible.

Here are additional tips:

1. Beware of phone calls, emails and social media posts soliciting donations for disasters. Only donate to relief organizations that you know and trust.

2. Be careful when providing your credit card information and never give out your social security number.

3. Don't be fooled by official-looking logos, stationery, or websites designed to resemble those of legitimate charities and government agencies.

4. You shouldn't feel pressure to donate. Legitimate organizations don't use high pressure tactics.

5.Don't open an attachment or a web link that comes with an email soliciting donations. These could contain a virus that could damage your computer.

6. Avoid sending money through wire transfer services.


Following these tips will help to make sure that your donation goes to where it's needed.