As many people look to provide help to earthquake victims in Nepal, scammers may also try to take advantage of the situation.
The quake over the weekend killed thousands of people, and efforts to provide international aid are already picking up steam. Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection Assistant Deputy Secretary Sandy Chalmers says the public should be wary of requests for donations that show up in emails, texts, or on social media. She says “scammers follow the news, just like we do, and they’ll do anything to take advantage of our charitable nature.”
Chalmers suggests checking out any charity before you give by researching them online. She advises donors to consider avoiding groups that have “sprung up” in the wake of the disaster, since they may not have the resources in the place to get relief where it is needed. Also, don’t be afraid to ask how your money will be used and how much goes to cover the administrative costs of the charity.
Consumers should also be wary of any emails, texts, or social media posts that try to convince you to click a link to find out more information. In some cases, those can result in malicious downloads on to a computer or other device.