October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month! You’re sure to see pink ribbons hanging in business windows, car bumpers, people’s shirts or hats, and countless other places.
Since breast cancer is one of the most common cancers in the U.S., it’s no surprise that nearly everyone gets involved in raising awareness about this serious illness. You have many opportunities to donate to great charities dedicated to fighting breast cancer.
Deception used to steal your money
But while you are searching for a worthy charity to donate your money and help make a difference, scammers are hunting for you as well. They will stop at nothing to deceive you into offering your dollars and cents to them instead of a real organization.
Once scammers have your cash or personal information, you can guarantee that legitimate charities will never know you tried to help out. It’s a sad reality that fraudsters prey upon you every chance they get, and this October, they are looking to get that opportunity during Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
4 tips to avoid fraudsters
Before you hand over your money, it will be incredibly helpful for you to know the common scams you are up against this month. Watch out for these questionable schemes:
1. Make sure the charity is legitimate.
Remember that pink ribbon we mentioned earlier? Just because a person or website displays pink ribbons, that doesn’t mean they are legitimate. Anyone could choose to use the ribbon for good or evil, depending on their motives. Don’t base your decision to donate money solely on the fact that somebody has a pink ribbon front and center.
2. Many scammers will try to deceive you via email.
When checking your emails, avoid clicking links included in the email body. These could take you to a fake website or even download malware onto your device. If a link looks interesting, type the organization’s name into your internet search bar and see what results come up.
3. Second-guess the phone calls you receive from unknown numbers.
Scammers like to call unsuspecting individuals and ask them to give their money via phone. Of course, once you’ve provided your credit card info, you’ll never hear from the scammers again—and you’ll need to get a new credit card! Fraudsters have even learned how to fake real nonprofit caller IDs, so you think you are receiving a call from a legitimate organization. When in doubt, say, “Let me think about that,” and then research the charity that is claiming to call you.
4. Take action before the scammers start hunting your down:
- Learn the names of real charity organizations and nonprofits so you can begin donating to them at your convenience.
- Get involved in your community’s efforts to raise awareness. This could be a local parade organized by your town’s small businesses or even a race like a 5K or half-marathon event!
- Odds are, you know someone affected by breast cancer. Ask them about their experience and find out their favorite charities. This is a reliable way to discover a valid avenue for you to support the cause.
Breast Cancer Awareness Month can be a great reminder for everyone to help make a difference in the fight to beat this horrible illness. Sadly, scammers will stoop low to try scooping your money out from under you before you realize it.
Charity scams are some of the most malicious ways that fraudsters use to steal money and ruin lives. But you are aware! You can stay proactive in the fight against cancer and in the battle to beat scammers at their own game.
IDShield exists to help keep your personal information protected as you support the cause this Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Find out how IDShield can protect you and empower you today!
IDShield is a product of Pre-Paid Legal Services, Inc. (“PPLSI”) and provides access to identity theft protection and restoration services. IDShield plans are available at individual or family rates. A family plan covers the named member, named member’s spouse or domestic partner and eligible dependent children under the age of 18. For complete terms, coverage, and conditions, please see an identity theft plan. All Licensed Private Investigators are licensed in the state of Oklahoma. An Identity Fraud Protection Plan (“Plan”) is issued through a nationally recognized carrier. IDShield/PPLSI is not an insurance carrier. This covers certain fraud expenses and legal costs as a result of a covered identity fraud event. See a Plan for complete terms, coverage, conditions, limitations, and family members who are eligible under the Plan.