Avoid Falling Victim to a Disaster Scam

Jackson, Miss.

The Mississippi Attorney General's Office says many volunteer groups are helping the state recover from a string of tornadoes. But Jim Hood says volunteers won't present victims with a bill for their services.

“Legitimate volunteer groups do not charge for their services,” said Hood. “If someone tries to demand you pay or tries to give you an invoice for work provided by a volunteer group, you should contact the local authorities or our Consumer Protection Division.”

Hood says residents should be wary of anyone who creates a sense of urgency or uses high-pressure tactics to 'act now'. That indicates they are probably a scam artist.

Hood says legitimate volunteer organizations are part of organized relief efforts in each county and are working closely with local authorities. Disaster survivors should always check with local authorities if they have any questions about accepting help from a volunteer group.

If you have concerns about whether something is legitimate or a scam, or you suspect that you have become a victim of a scam, you may contact the Consumer Protection Division of the Attorney General’s Office at 601-359-4230 or 1-800-281-4418.