Scammers love using instances of crisis to take advantage of consumers and steal their money and personal information. That is exactly what they are doing after a Navy ship caught fire. As reported by Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC) partner, the Federal Trade Commission, fake crowdfunding pages have been created as part of a charitable giving scam, after a fire destroyed the USS Bonhomme Richard and sailors lost all their possessions.
Who is it Targeting: Consumers wanting to help sailors in need after the USS Bonhomme Richard fire
What is it: A giving scam using crowdsource funding pages to take advantage of the crisis
What Are They After: The charitable giving scam employs fake crowdsource funding pages to steal people’s money instead of putting it towards the sailors impacted by the USS Bonhomme Richard fire. However, there is no way of knowing whether the money makes it to the sailors in need. Also, scammers can steal people’s personal information, like their credit card number or bank account information, to target them with future scams or, depending on what information the scammers get, commit identity theft and fraud.
How You Can Avoid It: Don’t rely on crowdsource funding pages to make legitimate donations. Crowdsource funding pages make it impossible to know whether the donations make it to the recipient. Always do research and only donate to known and trustworthy charities. Learn more about how to check out a charity before giving at https://www.ftc.gov/charity.
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