Do your Research Before Making Donations to Victims’ Family Funds
Oakland, CA – December 17, 2012 – Your Better Business Bureau is alerting consumers to reports of phony charity solicitations, supposedly on behalf of the families of victims of the Sandy Hook school shooting in Newtown on Friday.
BBB recommends donors avoid giving to charities or funds through unsolicited phone calls, emails, texts or social media appeals.
Charity scammers strike after natural catastrophes such as hurricanes, floods and earthquakes, as well as tragedies such as the Colorado theater shootings and now the Newtown school massacre.
BBB urges donors to:
Do your homework: Always research a charity at the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance website, www.give.org before donating money.
Select a charity yourself: Charity cheats will use every method at their disposal to reach out to generous Americans in times of tragedy. However, rather than replying to a charity appeal, BBB recommends choosing a well-known charity or one that has been endorsed by local or state authorities in the aftermath of a tragedy.
Contact charities directly: Never click on links to charities on unfamiliar websites or in texts or emails. These may take you to a lookalike website where you will be asked to provide financial information, or download harmful malware into your computer.
Donors may contribute to a victims’ family fund through a collaborative effort between The United Way and Newtown Savings Bank.
Donations may be sent to:
Sandy Hook School Support Fund
c/o Newtown Savings Banks
39 Main Street
Newtown, CT 06470.
Their phone number to make a donation is 800-461-0672. Donations can also be made online at https://newtown.uwwesternct.org/.
The Newtown Rotary Club has also set up a foundation to manage contributions directly for the families at http://www.newtownctrotary.org/
You can check out a business or charity’s review at www.oakland.bbb.org.
About the BBB
The BBB is an unbiased nonprofit organization that sets and upholds high standards for fair and honest business behavior. Businesses that earn BBB Accreditation contractually agree and adhere to the organization’s high standards of ethical business behavior. The BBB provides objective advice, free BBB Reliability ReportsTM on businesses and BBB Wise Giving ReportsTM on charities, and educational information on topics affecting marketplace trust. To further promote trust, your BBB also offers dispute resolution services for consumers and businesses. The first BBB was founded in 1912. Today, 114 BBBs serve communities across the U.S. and Canada.