"Unfortunately, criminals often exploit disasters for their own gain by creating fake charity names with bogus websites to solicit contributions through email, phone calls or social media," says Kim Garner, MoneyGram's head of global security and investigations. "Consumers should be leery of these fundraising tactics. We encourage people to research the charity before they give or, to only donate to charities they already know and trust."
Other tips to prevent becoming a victim of a charity scam include:
- Do not share personal or financial information unless the charity is confirmed to be reputable.
- Avoid giving to organizations who say they only accept donations via cash or a wire transfer.
- Do not open unsolicited emails that show alleged disaster pictures, they may be viruses used to steal personal information.
Consumers should also look closely at the name of the organization. Many times a fake charity's name will be similar to a well-known organization, only off by a word or two. Consult the IRS website for legitimate, tax-exempt charities.
Consumers should call 1-800-MONEYGRAM (800-666-3947) if they believe MoneyGram was used to wire money as a result of a Hurricane Harvey related charity scam. This information can be helpful in stopping others from being scammed by the same scheme.
About MoneyGram International, Inc.
MoneyGram is a global provider of innovative money transfer and payment services and is recognized worldwide as a financial connection to friends and family. Whether online, or through a mobile device, at a kiosk or in a local store, we connect consumers any way that is convenient for them. We also provide bill payment services, issue money orders and process official checks in select markets. More information about MoneyGram International, Inc. is available at moneygram.com.
ScamAwareness.org was founded by MoneyGram (NASDAQ: MGI) to raise awareness of common scams that target consumers. It provides tips and information that teach people to recognize the "red flags" that may indicate potential scams, and arm them with information that they can use to protect themselves and their loved ones.
SOURCE MoneyGram International