Delaware AG Warns of Typhoon Scams - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Delaware AG Warns of Typhoon Scams

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DOVER, Del. - Officials in the Philippines say nearly 600,000 people are homeless and more than 2,000 are dead after Typhoon Haiyan slammed the area.

The devastation has many people donating towards massive recovery, but you may want to be careful.

Scammers are taking notice.

"Whenever there is a disaster that happens, that's like open season for fraudulent activity," said Reverend Morris of Dover.

Morris and Peter Benevage, say they have received questionable emails and phone calls from scammers.

"There are several cases where I received emails from people who are looking for donations, you know, the usual scams," said Benevage.

Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden is warning folks to be careful.

In a statement, he says "Delawareans are always quick to answer the call for help, and we know from experience that fraudsters will try to take advantage of that generosity by setting up bogus relief organizations that claim to provide aid."

Biden says before you donate, make sure your money is going to a legitimate charity.

Make sure a charity is legitimate by visiting the Better Business Bureau.

Watch out for relief organizations that have popped up overnight, solicitations for cash-only donations or highly emotional solicitations, including high-pressure tactics to compel you to donate.

"They use these situations that are happening around us as ways to jump in and try to get their own funds drawn to them with no intention of sending the money where it is intended to go," said Morris.

"You wouldn't give your money to a perfect stranger without cause and without knowing a little bit about it and I think that's the most important factor," said Benevage.

If you or someone you know have been scammed, call the consumer hotline at 1 (800) 220-5424 or contact the consumer protection unit at consumer.protection@state.de.us.

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