Bogus / Fake Disaster Relief Charities for Super Typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda Victims
Unfortunately, in the aftermath of major global disasters such as typhoon Haiyan / Yolanda, con artists often establish bogus charities; often seeking donations by email, text message, telephone, and other means.
In times like these, many people are moved and eager to donate to disaster relief charities.
However, potential donors need to exercise some basic due diligence before giving money to people soliciting donations on behalf of victims. Pleas for assistance can come from emails, websites, direct mailing, text messages, and telephone calls.
There are a number of established charities in the Philippines that traditionally are involved in disaster relief assistance. This list is too long to publish here; however, many legitimate charities are listed on local and foreign government websites, or have long standing websites of their own.
The general rule is to do some basic homework prior to making your donation; and if in doubt, try to find another charity.
Following are some tips provided by the US Federal Bureau of Investigation to mitigate the risks from this type of fraudulent activity:
Do not respond to any unsolicited (spam) incoming emails, including by clicking links contained within those messages, because they may contain computer viruses.
Be cautious of individuals representing themselves as victims or officials asking for donations via email or social-networking sites.
Beware of organizations with copycat names similar to, but not exactly the same, as those of reputable charities.
Rather than following a purported link to a website, verify the existence and legitimacy of nonprofit organizations by using Internet-based resources.
Be cautious of emails that claim to show pictures of the disaster areas in attached files because those files may contain viruses. Open attachments only from known senders.
To ensure that contributions are received and used for intended purposes, make donations directly to known organizations rather than relying on others to make the donation on your behalf.
Do not be pressured into making contributions; reputable charities do not use coercive tactics.
Do not give your personal or financial information to anyone who solicits contributions. Providing such information may compromise your identity and make you vulnerable to identity theft.
Avoid direct cash donations if possible. Pay by debit or credit card or write a check directly to the charity. Do not make checks payable to individuals.
Remember, legitimate charities do not normally solicit donations via money transfer services.
We’ve compiled a list of verified legitimate organizations like the red Cross and UNICEF for those who want to help here – https://www.wheninmanila.com/verified-legit-ways-to-help-super-typhoon-haiyan-yolanda-victims-how-to-donate-or-volunteer-with-legitimate-organizations/