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AG Schmidt recognizes International Charity Fraud Awareness Week

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Published: Oct. 19, 2020 at 2:13 PM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt is recognizing International Charity Fraud Awareness Week, which goes from October 19 to the 23, by reminding Kansans to exercise caution when choosing to make a donation to a charity.

“Kansans are generous in supporting charitable causes,” Schmidt said. “During International Charity Fraud Awareness Week, we are offering advice to help Kansans remain vigilant and not fall victim to fraudsters who use the tragedies of COVID-19 and a spate of natural disasters to exploit Kansans' generosity.”

Some tips Schmidt suggests include:

-Do your research before you donate: Most charities soliciting in Kansas are required to register with the Secretary of State’s office. You can check to see if the charity is registered here.

-Watch out for names that sound alike: Scammers will often try to make their organizations' names similar to well-known charities.

-Ask questions to find out where your donations go: Ask for written information, including how much of the money raised is actually used for charitable purposes and how much ends up in the hands of the fundraiser.

-Be careful with telemarketers requesting contributions: Oftentimes, the telemarketer keeps a substantial amount of the donation.

-Do not be pressured into making a contribution or a pledge: High pressure appeals that claim a need is “urgent” are often a warning sign of a scam.

International Charity Fraud Awareness Week is a coordinated campaign to help charities and consumers avoid charity fraud and promote wise giving. Partners in the United States joined the awareness campaign for the first time in 2018. The Federal Trade Commission, the National Association of State Charities Officials, state charities regulators across America and other groups joined the Charities Commission for England & Wales, which has hosted its own event for many years, to launch the international effort.

For more tips on how to stay safe when making charitable contributions, or to report a suspicious charity, visit the attorney general’s consumer protection website at www.InYourCornerKansas.org

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