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State Attorney General's Office Urges Caution When Giving To Charities

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RALEIGH, N.C. — Thousands of people are being affected by Hurricane Katrina and want to do what they can to help. The state Attorney General's Office is urging people to do their homework and deal with charities they already know and trust.

"We've already seen a number of Web sites spring up for people to give contributions and we're not sure who they are or where the money's going, so be very careful about this," said North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper.

Cooper said he is most concerned about e-mail and telephone solicitation for donations. Officials said it is best to head toward the charities you have dealt with in the past.

Officials said it is also important to know how to spot a fraud. Telemarketers who try to play on emotions, refuse to answer your questions, offer to pick up your donation or pressure you for a credit card number are usually up to no good. If you suspect telemarketing fraud, let Cooper's Consumer Protection Division know by calling


If you have questions, you should contact the Secretary of State or the Attorney General's office for information on non-profit groups raising money and supplies for hurricane victims.


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