St. Louis, MO (KSDK) - The St. Louis area Better Business Bureau is offering advice on how to avoid donation scams in the wake of Hurricane Isaac.
The BBB says to be extra cautious when giving online. And if you do donate over the internet, go directly to the charity's website instead of responding to emails soliciting donations.
People should also rely on experts for charity evaluations instead of some bloggers or websites which may have not done the necessary research into an organization. The BBB evaluates charities based on 20 standards for accountability and provides a list of accredited organizations on its website.
It's also important to find out whether a charity is providing direct aid to victims, or is raising money for other groups. Usually, donations go farthest without a 'middle man' involved.
And, the BBB says to make sure your donation is appropriate for the needs. Many times, food or clothing is not helpful in the immediate aftermath of a disaster.