CONSUMER ALERT: Attorney General Moody Urges Floridians to Look Out for Potential Charity Scammers When Donating to Maui Wildfire Relief Efforts
TALLAHASSEE, Fla—Attorney General Ashley Moody today issued a Consumer Alert warning Floridians who wish to give funds to those affected by the Maui wildfires of the potential for charity scams. The wildfires burned more than 2,800 acres and claimed the lives of at least 100 people. Attorney General Moody is reminding anyone wishing to donate to victims of the fires, or charities providing aid, to be on guard against scammers who may exploit the disaster for personal gain.
Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “It is heartbreaking to see the devastation caused by the wildfires in Hawaii. Residents in the affected areas have endured tragic losses and Floridians may wish to donate to help the recovery. However, scammers may try to exploit the tragedy to take advantage of generous donors. Be cautious of bad actors when making donations to help the victims of this tragedy.”
Tips to avoid charity scams in the wake of a disaster include:
- Check the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance at Give.org or Charity Navigator to determine whether a charity exists and if there are any complaints against the organization before donating;
- Research how the charity uses donations;
- Refrain from providing personal or financial information to unsolicited calls or emails on behalf of a charity; and
- Carefully review the charity’s name before making a donation. Scammers may try to trick unwary donors with titles that resemble legitimate organizations.
For more tips related to charity scams, view Attorney General Moody’s Scams at a Glance: Charity Scams resource by clicking here.
Floridians can report charity scams to the Florida Attorney General’s Office by calling 1(866) 9NO-SCAM or visiting MyFloridaLegal.com.
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The Florida Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division issues Consumer Alerts to inform Floridians of emerging scams, new methods used to commit fraud, increased reports of common scams or any other deceptive practice. Consumer Alerts are designed to notify Floridians about scams and available refunds in an effort to prevent financial losses or other harm caused by deceptive practices. Anyone encountering a scam should report the incident to the Florida Attorney General's Office by calling 1(866) 9NO-SCAM or visiting MyFloridaLegal.com.