FTC: Look out for Las Vegas shooting aid scams

Some of the casinos along the Las Vegas Strip dim their marquees signs for about 10 minutes Sunday, Oct. 8, 2017, in Las Vegas, to pay tribute to the victims who spent that much time under fire in the Las Vegas shooting on Sunday, Oct. 1. (AP Photo/Steve Marcus)

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The Federal Trade Commission just released a statement about the need for consumers to be on the lookout for scams relating to the Las Vegas shooting.

“The FTC has heard from people about suspicious requests for donations. A little research will help you avoid a scam and ensure that your gift goes to a reputable charity that will use the money as you intend,” the FTC said.

To avoid being taken advantage of, the FTC recommends that you follow these guidelines before giving:

  • Donate to charities you know and trust with a proven track record. Check out the charity with the Better Business Bureau’s (BBB) Wise Giving AllianceCharity NavigatorCharity Watch, or GuideStar.
  • Be alert for charities that seem to have sprung up overnight in connection with current events. Check them out before you send money.
  • Search the charity’s name online. Do people say it’s a scam?
  • Don’t assume that pleas for help posted on crowdfunding sites or social media are legitimate. Real victims’ pictures and stories can be misused to con you.
  • Don’t click on links or open attachments in emails. You could unknowingly install malware on your computer or be taken to a look-alike website for a fake charity. Look up the charity’s web address and type it in yourself.
  • When texting to donate, confirm the number on the charity’s website.
  • Designate the event or cause you want your funds to be used for unless you are okay with the money being used in other ways.

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