9/11 emergency relief and other scams: Internet ScamBusters #46
Our hearts go out to those who were injured and those who lost family and friends in yesterday's attacks. There are just no words strong enough to express how we feel today.
Please, we ask each of you to take a few moments to reach out to the victims and their families and help in whatever way you can. But...
Make Sure Your Help Goes
Where You Intended!
In the wake of yesterday's events, publishing an issue of Internet ScamBusters was the last thing on our minds. Given the info below, we hope you'll see why we felt we had no other responsible option.
We've received reports of spammers sending out calls for assistance for "emergency relief funds," and directing the recipients to contribute money to the Red Cross - through the spammers' web sites.
Many of these spammers are trying to steal money and credit card numbers.
Do NOT respond to these emails!
If you wish to contribute money to an organization, we recommend that you do so directly through the organization's site, or to a local chapter. The address for the Red Cross is http://www.redcross.org
You can also donate by phone at
1-800-435-7669 (English speaking) or
1-800-257-7575 (Spanish speaking).
Amazon.com has set up a channel through which you can donate to the Red Cross, which may be a better choice for online donations. The Red Cross donations page has been swamped all day, and Amazon makes it very easy to donate from $1 to $50. Just go to: http://www.amazon.com/
Over $767,000 has been donated to the Red Cross so far by people at the Amazon site.
We normally don't ask this -- and please make sure you do NOT spam this issue: however, we'd like you to consider forwarding this issue of Internet ScamBusters to people you know who are new to the Internet, as well as those you think would benefit from this issue. These sorts of scams are usually directed at inexperienced surfers.
Other Important Information
If you wish to give blood, check with your local office to see if they have space. At the moment, many Red Cross offices throughout the country are swamped with donors. It might be better to wait a day or two.
Just don't lose your motivation.
Phone numbers for those who want to find out about friends and relatives who they are concerned may have been hurt in yesterday's attacks can be found at: http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/2001/trade.center/contacts.html
The site lists contact information for those who believe they may have information relating to the attack that may help law enforcement to find and capture the perpetrators. It also lists other agencies that are helping the survivors and relatives of the victims.
If you have any information that can help, visit http://www.ifccfbi.gov
The Justice Department's Office of Victims of Crime has set up a phone line to provide information to families about victims and about services for survivors and their rights: 1-800-331-0075.
Friends and family who wish to check on passengers and flights can call:
American Airlines: 1-800-245-0999
United Airlines: 1-800-932-8555
We thank you for your help in dealing with this tragedy.