Beshear warns of Hurricane Harvey scams

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Scam Alert
Scam Alert

FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – Attorney General Andy Beshear issued a scam alert Thursday to warn Kentuckians of fake charity scams related to Hurricane Harvey.

Due to the lasting devastation of Hurricane Harvey, Beshear is asking Kentuckians to be wary of scammers attempting to profit from relief efforts.

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“The families and communities impacted by this deadly storm deserve our help,” said Beshear. “I am asking generous Kentuckians to please take time and verify a charity before making a donation.”

In Kentucky and across the nation, con artists are using bogus charity names or representing themselves as legitimate charities, in order to collect relief funds that they falsely claim will benefit storm victims.

Beshear said Kentuckians who are not familiar with a charitable organization and how they use their money can verify what percentage of their income goes to the charity’s purpose on CharityNavigator.org. Additional research tools and resources, including a list of active charitable campaigns in Kentucky, are available on the Attorney General’s website.

The Office of the Attorney General also provides these additional tips on how to avoid a fake charity scam:

  • Do not feel pressured to give money or financial information over the phone.
  • Beware of sound alike charities and phony websites.
  • Be cautious of social media requests for donations. Although some may be legitimate, consumers need to verify before making donations.
  • Ask solicitors what percentage of your donation will be given to the relief effort. By law, the solicitor must tell you if you ask.

Kentuckians who receive a fake charity scam call or online solicitation should contact the Office of the Attorney General at 888-432-9257 or file a scam report online.

To stay up to date on new and trending scams Kentuckians should sign up to receive Scam Alerts from the Office of the Attorney General. To enroll text the words KYOAG Scam to GOV311 (468311), or enroll online at ag.ky.gov/scams and select text message or email alert.

 

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Tom Kenny joined ABC 36 News in June of 2001 as a General Assignment Reporter. A native of Peoria, Illinois, he graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications from Western Illinois University. He currently anchors ABC 36 News at 5pm, 6pm and 11pm. Tom has more than three decades of experience in broadcast journalism. He is the only broadcast journalist in Lexington television history to be honored with a national Edward R. Murrow Award. Tom was recognized for reporting on a story that gave a rare glimpse inside the secretive world of the Federal Witness Protection Program. He has won an Emmy Award for anchoring and another for investigative reporting, exposing the deceit and potential danger of online diploma mills. Tom has ten other Emmy nominations to his credit for investigative and feature reporting. He has won Associated Press Awards for reporting and anchoring. He has won two Addy Awards for excellence in promotional writing. Tom was the first broadcast journalist in Lexington TV history to be awarded the Silver Circle Award by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. It is one of the highest honors given by NATAS. It recognizes television professionals who have performed distinguished service within the television industry for 25-years or more. Tom was honored for more than his longevity, he was recognized for making an enduring contribution to the vitality of the television industry and for setting high standards of achievement. He was also recognized for giving back to the community as a mentor, educator and volunteer. Tom also has network broadcast experience in radio and television having worked as a sports reporter for ESPN, Sportschannel, NBC Sports and the Breeders’ Cup. He was also the studio host and halftime producer for CBS Radio Sports’ College Football Game of the Week and covered the NFL for One-On-One Radio Sports. Prior to joining WTVQ-TV, Tom was Vice-President of the Houston Astros Minor League baseball team in Lexington. He was part of the original management team that brought professional baseball back to the Bluegrass after a nearly 50-year absence. Tom has lived in Lexington since 1984. In that time, he has been heavily involved with dozens of charity and civic groups, with a special emphasis on helping Veterans. He can be reached at tkenny@wtvq.com. You can also follow Tom on Facebook www.facebook.com/TomKennyABC and Twitter @TomKennyNews. Just click on the links at the top of the page.