DATCP: Do Research Before You Donate this Holiday Season

The end of the year is approaching fast, and that often
means a time to give money to a favorite charity or organization.

Michelle Reinen, head of the state’s Consumer Protection
Bureau, says those who are looking to make a donation this year should watch
out for “look-alike” or imposter websites that scammers have set up to try and
take your money. She says often those bad actors have set up very
similar-sounding names and websites to the better-known and reputable

Reinen tells us there are a few websites you can visit to
make sure a charity is legitimate. “Do your research and check out the charities
at charitynavigator.org or give.org,” Reinen said. “You can also see if the
charity is registered in the state of Wisconsin to solicit here with the
Wisconsin Department of Financial Insitutions – and that’s WDFI.org.”

She says to be leery of people calling or emailing you to
solicit donations and to ask a caller ot send written information about their
organization before you make a donation.