Tis the season for holiday scams – avoid being the next victim

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. –The holidays are right around the corner. Many people feel the need to help the less fortunate.

How can they protect themselves from scammers and still give back this time of year?

Scammers take advantage of that charity – using spoof calls, fake shopping sites and even fake nonprofits.

If money is given to thieves it’s difficult, if not impossible to get it back.

Bowling Green Police Department public information officer Ronnie Ward said, “It’s hard to catch scammers cause most of them don’t live in this country. People ask you to send money through a gift card, or a money order, or Western Union or something along those lines, and it’s a really good possibility you’re not going to get your money back.”

The Better Business Bureau said people should always research whose hands their money will end up in.

People can search for any company or non-profit on the BBB’s website to see if it checks out.

BBB’s director of strategic marketing Whitney Adkins said, “I think [research is] the best way to not only make sure that you know where your money is going but to feel good as well to know that you are helping out a cause that you believe in.”

When in doubt?

Ward said, “There’s a lot of agencies here in Bowling Green that you can give to, and there are local people who benefit from the money when you give. So if you do want to give, give locally.”