How to avoid getting scammed by false charities this holiday sea - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

How to avoid getting scammed by false charities this holiday season

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KENNEWICK, WA - Now that Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday are over, today is Giving Tuesday.

It's a day where you are urged to volunteer or make donations to local, national, and international charities.

But how can you be sure that the charity you're handing your money over to is legitimate?

Today, Reporter Rex Carlin learned that there are many things you can do to make sure you're donating your money to a worthwhile cause, but the biggest danger is to blindly give away your money without verifying the supposed charity at all.

If you get a call from someone claiming to be from a charity, there are a number of precautions you can take according to the Federal Trade Commission's consumer information page.

Always ask for detailed information about the charity, get the exact name of the organization and research it thoroughly online, and keep a record of all donations you do make.

If someone refuses to give the detailed information you request, won't provide proof that your donation is tax deductible, or asks for cash donations...take those as major red flags and avoid that charity.

The following link shows's top-rated charities list: groups that have earned B+ or better grades on the site's quality scale. Consider taking a look at this list before you get out your checkbook this holiday season.