How to Detect and Prevent Charity Fraud

Risk Management

Charities exist to give us hope for a better tomorrow. In the face of calamities like natural disasters, economic meltdowns or just to take care of a disadvantaged and vulnerable group, Charity comes in as a great aid in terms of food, clothes, financial donation alongside offering comfort and support to the victims. However, how do we know that the money or item we give out really goes to charity?

Sadly, we also have fraudsters in today's age who prey on the goodwill of others. Most of these con artists devise Charity frauds in which they swindle unsuspecting givers of their money and other possessions. But despite these frauds fronting themselves as real Charity foundations it is easy to detect whether they are fraudsters or not.

Check the History of the Foundation

If the organization only exists to rip off good-will givers, chances are they won't really do much to make their existence non-fraudulent. Thus as a precaution, it is good to check the history of the company, the certification of their websites and also verify the address and contacts they give. Moreover, go the extra mile and check whether the charity organization is registered by the required authorities.

Cash-only requests

Sometimes you may get a charitable organization, which is a ploy, has all the right credentials and is requesting donation for a charitable cause. At this point, you may want to consider the nature of the charity course to determine what kind of donation they need. If a charitable organization only asks for cash donations and refuses any other kind of donation, it is time to be suspicious and do a little more homework on them.

Misleading Pledge Texts

It's true we live a fast moving life that sometimes may cause us to lose track of some of the activities we do in the past. Fraudsters have found a way of using this to send messages that congratulate you for agreeing to send a small fee as a pledge to a particular organization. If you get such messages, it is good to call back the number and inquire about the pledge, when you made it and who had requested you to make it.

A Knock on the door

We have all seen that guy who shows up at our doorstep, with a huge angelic smile and holding a form from a charity Fund. Often times we fall for this because we have little time to do a background check. You can always request for a brochure about the organization or a business card that identifies them. You can choose to make a later donation after you have had the time to verify the charity cause.

Never be pressured

Charity is all about giving from a willing and kind heart, if the organization is pressuring you to act immediately, be cautious about it. Also if any of the above mentioned scenarios requires an immediate donation, which feels demanding, it's your right to say no to the request. We cannot give to all the charity organizations out there; we are only entitled to give where our hearts tell us.

Here are few charity organizations that I support:
 1.    Big Brothers Big Sisters of America (BBSSA)   is the oldest and largest youth mentoring organization in the United States, 
 2.    Mater prize Home . All funds raised from the Mater Prize Home Lottery  go directly to supporting patient care and research at Mater hospitals and the Mater Medical Research Institute.
 3.    Canines for Disabled Kids (CDK)   is a relatively new charity, having begun only in 1998. This organization provides assistance dogs to children under age 12 who are autistic or have hearing or physical disabilities.

Melissa Davis

marketing at Australian Foundation

Melissa Davis is journalist and marketing specialist from Australia, she has been writing about health, travel, and other topics on blogs across the Internet. Melissa lives in Brisbane with her husband and young daughter where she enjoys parenting, cycling, and other extreme sports.

Comments (1)
Eric Phuah

Eric Phuah, Director at

Everyone should read these tips so that charitable money doesn't go to the wrong type of people. Thanks for the article Melissa!