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Aylesbury's MP warns against charity scams

Some people are using the pandemic to scam the vulnerable.

Published by Scarlett Bawden-Gaul at 7:55am 4th April 2020. (Updated at 8:13am 4th April 2020) 3-minute read.

Aylesbury's MP warns against charity scams

The MP for Aylesbury has warned against charity based scams.

Rob Butler, Aylesbury MP, has warned constituents about scammers posing as charity worker. 

Recently there has been an increase in scams, with the number up 40% in a month in Buckinghamshire.

Rob is urging people to make sure their donations reach genuine charities, and not scammers. 

Sadly, there have been reports to Action Fraud and Trading Standards of scammer targeting the vulnerable. 

Some have posed as charity workers or good Samaritans offering help with shopping, or claiming to be raising money for charities. 

Rob said: 

"It's been fantastic to see the generous community spirit across the constituency throughout the coronavirus crisis. I'd like to thank all the coordinators and volunteers of community groups who are helping the most vulnerable people in Aylesbury and the nearby villages.

"It's appalling that scammers are trying to take advantage of the kindness and goodwill of local people, so I'd like to encourage those who would like to donate money to check that they are supporting registered charities."

The Charity Commission for England and Wales has provided some tips to donate safely:

  • Check the charity's name and registration number at gov.uk/checkcharity. Most charities with an annual income of £5,000 or more must be registered.
  • Make sure the charity is genuine before giving any financial information - it's ok to decide not to give on the spot. Be wary of unsolicited emails from charities you have never heard of and be careful when responding to emails or clicking on links within them.
  • Exercise the same caution as with any other internet transaction, for example, to donate online, visit the charity's own website and always type the website address into the browser yourself.
  • Contact or find out more online about the charity that you're seeking to donate to or work with to find out more about their spending. Ask a trusted friend, neighbour or relative if you are unable to research this or need a second opinion.
  • Ignore requests to donate through a money transfer company. 
  • If in doubt about an approach, give to a charity that you have an existing relationship with.
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