BBB warns of fake Boston Marathon charities - – Rockford’s News Leader

BBB warns of fake Boston Marathon charities


A year after bombings at the Boston Marathon killed three people and injured hundreds more, the Better Business Bureau is warning the public about fake charities purporting to gather funds for victims.

"After tragic events scammers often play to the emotions of consumers seeking donations to special funds that don't exist or that improperly distribute the donations," BBB Rockford Regional Office Director Dennis Horton said. "Consumers need to do careful research before donating to any charity that claims to be involved with the Boston Marathon."

The BBB suggests the following tips when giving to charities:

  • Take the time to check out the charity to make sure it's not questionable or poorly managed
  • Check for state registration: About 40 states require charities to register before soliciting for gifts
  • Make sure the charity specifies how collected funds will be used and when
  • Never click links to charities on unfamiliar websites or in text messages or emails: they could take you to look-alike websites that could steal your personal information or download malware onto your computer
  • Check for financial transparency: transparent organizations will post how they spent funds raised on their website
  • Remember that not all groups collecting funds are tax-exempt as charities under section 501(c)(3) of the IRS Code

You can find a list of official Boston Marathon charities here:

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