Dealing with disasters is part of life. Floods, hurricanes, or snowstorms; both individuals and businesses suffer when a natural disaster hits. We all want to help people, but you should know that there are some illegitimate charities out there.

Online Donations Make It Easier- For the Bad Guys

Charities now use web pages and online donation buttons, so it’s much easier for scammers and fake charities to operate. If you’re going to donate, be sure to keep these tips in mind.

Only Donate to Charities that You Know

As soon as the names of the storms are revealed, scammers purchase the domain names for specific hurricanes and are ready to solicit donations that go right in their pockets. Only pick charities that you’re familiar with.

Confirm Who They Are

Before donating to an organization, take a minute to check them out at sites like Charity Navigator, Charity Watch, GuideStar, or the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance.

Be Leery of Links

If a major disaster has occurred, be skeptical of any emails asking you to donate. Hackers take the opportunity to flood users with phishing emails related to the current natural disaster. Links could infect your PC with malware.

Trust the Tried and True

If you want to donate safely to those who are suffering due to hurricanes, you can trust FEMA and the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster.