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BBB warns of earthquake-related scams


As the relief efforts to help earthquake victims in Haiti ramp up, make sure you don't become a victim. The Better Business Bureau says scammers took advantage of people's generosity after Hurricane Katrina and the Indonesian Tsunami.

The BBB offers these tips:

-Rely on expert opinion, like the BBB website, when it comes to evaluating a charity.
-Be wary of claims that 100 percent of donations will assist relief victims, because reputable charities likely will have some administrative costs.
-Be cautious when giving online and especially of spam e-mails that claim to link to a relief organization.
-Find out if the charity is on the ground in the impacted area.
-Find out if the charity is providing direct aid or raising money for other groups.
-Gifts of clothing, food or other in-kind donations may not be the best way to help if the organization does not have the staff or infrastructure to distribute the aid, so check how it plans to deliver.

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