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How to Donate Safely to Charity

Neil Schwartzman

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After a tragedy, many of us want to donate to funds and charities to show our support for a community.

However, scam charities immediately pop up, looking to steal your well intentioned donations. There are at least 30 newly-registered domains over the past 48 hours related to the tragic shootings at the Sandy Hook elementary school in Connecticut: Most, if not all are scams and rip-offs. How then, to donate so that your funds make it to the deserving victims?

Check out Charity Navigator, an online database that assesses charities based upon revenues, operating costs, and the percentage of funds that make it to the intended recipients.

Donate to the Red Cross / Red Crescent / Magen David Adom. The International Red Cross is a stalwart organization that is reliable, and extremely well-run. The Red Cross of America has a fund for the families and survivors of the Sandy Hook shootings.

News site CNN usually will make mention of an appropriate charity. They report that the United Way of Western Connecticut have set up a Sandy Hook School Support Fund at https://newtown.uwwesternct.org/

If you encounter what you believe to be a scam charity, report them to your local police, federal government or police force, and to the Internet Crime Complaint Centre.

By Neil Schwartzman, Executive Director, The Coalition Against unsolicited Commercial Email - CAUCE. More blog posts from Neil Schwartzman can also be read here.

Related topics: Cybercrime, Security, Spam

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