Since we've officially entered the "giving season," lots of us are looking for charitable groups and organizations that could really use a helping hand. Given the pandemic and resulting hardships, there's a pretty big list of them asking for help.

There's also a really big list of people who falsely represent charitable organizations, and they're going all-out to make sure your contributions go directly into the wrong pockets.

So, how do you know the difference?

One easy way, according to Dennis Horton, Director of the Rockford Regional Office of the Better Business Bureau (BBB), is to go directly to the organizations to whom you wish to donate.

Dennis joined the WROK Morning Show on Tuesday morning to share some tips and alerts to avoid sending your money to a scam artist rather than a deserving group or organization. As someone who deals with scams, phishing, and countless other tricks that are constantly being employed against consumers in and around the Rockford area, Dennis points out that being aware of how these scams work can keep you from being a victim of one.

Rather than responding to a link in an unrequested email from a charitable group, contact that group directly for details on how best to help them. Many scammers will appropriate a charity's name in their email address, but the only way to be sure you're dealing with the correct people is to make that direct contact rather than responding to an email than may send you somewhere that's not legitimate.

Take a listen, as Dennis outlines how to go about it, and he also has details on "Giving Tuesday," along with some information about something called the "City of Rockford Warranty Letter."



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