AG warns of scams

Published 10:34 am Friday, July 29, 2016

The Ohio Attorney General’s Office is warning that some Ohioans have received suspicious calls asking for donations to support police and fire causes.

The calls ask consumers to give money to support wounded police officers and firefighters, underfunded departments, scholarship funds for families of officers or similar causes. Consumers say the callers refuse to answer questions or to provide viable call-back numbers.

The calls appear to come from Ohio phone numbers, but the numbers could be spoofed or the calls could be made over the Internet, meaning the caller could be located somewhere else entirely.

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Not all calls seeking charitable donations are potential scams. Legitimate charities and professional solicitors, which generally are for-profit businesses paid to collect donations, can and do seek donations over the phone, but they must provide the name of the organization and the location of its principal place of business.

Here are some common practices by scammers: Make vague claims about a cause; use a name similar to a well-known organization; provide little or no detailed information; refuse to answer questions; refuse to provide a call-back number; use a “spoofed” phone number; demand immediate payment; ask for payment via wire transfer or prepaid card; ask for payment to an individual instead of an organization.

To find out whether an organization has registered with the Ohio Attorney General’s Office or to report suspicious charitable activity, contact the 800-282-0515 or