AG's office: Watch out for Boston-related scams

By Chris Carl 1:27pm, April 22, 2013 - Updated 1:48pm, April 22, 2013
You were probably nowhere near Boston last week, but you could still be a victim.

Attorney General Biden warns you to be on the lookout for scams related to the bombing.

Biden says it's not uncommon for the unscrupulous to take advantage of people's desire to help victims of tragic events.

He encourages you to make sure a charity is legit before making a donation, hang-up on aggressive cold callers, and delete unsolicited e-mails.

If you think you may have been scammed, contact the Attorney General's office of Consumer Protection at 1-800-220-5424 or email the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Unit at

Tips from the Attorney General's office

Make sure a charity is legitimate by visiting the Better Business Bureau at, Charity Navigator at, or the American Institute of Philanthropy at where you can view lists of verified charities. Ensure that the solicitation website and the purported charity match and that the website is secure.

Hang up on aggressive cold callers and delete unsolicited e-mail. Fraudulent solicitors will do their best to appeal to your emotions; legitimate charities will inform you of their charitable mission and the ways your donation will be put to good use.

Ask whether your donation is tax-deductable. You have a right to know how your donated funds are used and you are entitled to ask questions and get answers about the charity that will be receiving your money.

Avoid clicking on links received via email or online pop-ups and do not provide any personal information to anyone you suspect is attempting to fraudulently solicit you. Providing even your address or zip code may allow fraudsters to take advantage of you.

Do not give cash donations and do not supply your credit card number or other personal financial information. If you wish to make a donation, you should pay by check and make the payment out to the charity’s full name. Avoid using initials or abbreviations in making out the check and do not make it payable to anyone except the legitimate charity you want the funds to go to.

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