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Who doesn’t appreciate more money? Whether it comes from savings or good decisions, a little extra can go a long way.
Here are five ways to keep your money safe while lining your pockets.
1. It’s good to give, but be careful
Reputable charities and non-profits rely on donations to do their good work. Unfortunately, scammers are using this to their advantage. Even worse, sometimes the charities themselves are crooked.
Charity scammers lie about who they’re affiliated with and how your contribution will help. Watch out for vague sentimental claims and those that won’t get into specifics.
Here are signs a call is coming from a legitimate charity:
- They can only call during specific times. You won’t hear from them before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m.
- They have to disclose their name and purpose. They have to tell you the name of the charity and they’re calling to seek a donation.
- They can’t use a robocall or prerecorded message to reach you unless you are a member of the charity or a prior donor ― and even then, they must offer you a way to opt out of future calls.
- The caller ID on your phone has to show the name of the charity or fundraiser, along with a number you can call to ask to be placed on the charity’s do not call list.
Keep the following in mind when dealing with any charity:
- Safeguard your information: Never give out personal data if you don’t know the sender of a text or email or caller and can’t verify their identity.
- Do your research: Before donating money, search for the charity online and look at ratings or reviews.
- Use these resources: Charity Navigator and CharityWatch offer reports and ratings about how charitable organizations spend donations.
- Crowdfunding campaigns aren’t always honest: When coming across a crowdfunding effort, try to find out who is behind the charity drive and do as much research on the person or cause as possible.
- Watch how you donate: Never donate to any charity that insists on gift cards, wire transfers or cryptocurrency. If they are legitimate, any form of payment should be sufficient.
- Don’t give in to pressure: If the caller pushes you …….