Last week the IRS issued a consumer alert warning people about potential fake charity scams in the wake of the recent tragedy in Orlando. If you are planning on donating money, here are some tips to make sure it is a legitimate charity.
- Donate to recognized charities.
- Beware of charities with names that are similar to familiar or nationally known organizations. Some phony charities use names or websites that sound or look like those of respected, legitimate organizations. You can check for IRS approved charities at IRS Exempt Organizations Select Check.
- Don’t give out personal financial information — such as Social Security numbers or credit card and bank account numbers and passwords — to anyone who solicits a contribution. Scam artists may use this information to steal a donor’s identity and money.
- Don’t give or send cash. For security and tax record purposes, contribute by check or credit card or another way that provides documentation of the gift. You may be able to deduct your charitable donation on your taxes, but you will need some type of documentation.
For more information on phishing and online scams you can check IRS Report Phishing and Online Scams page.