As part of its globally-minded mission and an effort to let consumers feel good about their online purchases, Amazon announced a charitable giving program called Amazon Smile, named after the iconic, swishy smile logo on all of their branding. The purpose of the Smile program, though, is a little different than other retailer charities that let the customer round up his purchases or make a donation.
Amazon does the giving on your behalf. How much giving, you ask? Well, that would all depend on you! Purchases made specifically through the Amazon Smile website (simply found at smile.amazon.com) will result in .5% of every qualifying purchases going to the charity of the customer’s choice. Yes, Amazon will make that donation, all thanks to you for doing business with the retailer. As for the charities, there are more than one million eligible non-profit charities to choose from, and you’re not locked into picking any single charity. You can pick a new charity at any time by logging into your account and selecting another worthy organization. Like us.
Yes, the Identity Theft Resource Center is now an Amazon Smile charity! Your purchases can benefit our organization and continue the important work we do, all while clicking your mouse. Your support would help us continue raising awareness about online security, helping individuals remain safe through social media, and more importantly, being the go-to source for help should your identity be stolen.
What is exactly that we do? Our top priority is being the first stop for members of the public who’ve had their personally identifying information stolen and used without their permission. We keep up with the latest information and agency contact sources, and provide step-by-step instructions for people who’ve fallen victim to any of the wide varieties of identity theft.
We also work really hard to educate the public, law enforcement officials, and lawmakers about new threats to our personal privacy. As computer hackers develop new ways to attack public safety, we track down the problem and let people know about it. This awareness hopefully helps the public prevent as much of this type of crime as possible.
Most important of all, though, is the fact that our resources are free. You don’t have to be a member of any organization or sign up for any three-month trial of a service in order to access the information we gather. We’re here for the public, and that’s why we can always use a little support.
It’s really simple: use your same Amazon user name and password, your same shopping cart, your same preferences…everything. Just make sure that when you go looking for a great product on Amazon, that you first go to smile.amazon.com (a lot of members even choose to change their web browser’s book mark so that it automatically goes to the Smile site instead of the usual Amazon site). Everything about the shopping experience is the same, except you’re telling Amazon, “The ITRC is a great group of people and they do important work, so let’s help them out.”
We’re honored and humbled to be known for the work that we do, and we’ve spent the last fifteen years helping others through that work. By connecting with us as your Amazon Smile charity, you can help make sure that we’re here for consumers for a long time to come.