OMAHA (KPTM)- This is the time of year when scammers really go to work, making sure they get some of the money people are giving away. Charity Navigator states charities receive 41 percent of all donations during the holiday season.
That's why you want to check and double check who you're donating to before writing a check because some charities might not be who they say they are.
The Better Business Bureau said this is prime season for scammers to take advantage of your generosity.
"We have had reports from people that have made gifts to look–a–like charities that popped up online," said Jim Hegarty, president of the BBB in Omaha.
For those who donate online, be sure to type in the correct web address to that charity. Scammers use fake web sites that look just like a legitimate charity, changing only the details of where to send donations.
"We want to make sure that if they do make the decision to give gifts this year or to give online that they do so wisely and that they research the charities that they're considering giving to," said Hegarty.
Legitimate charities are registered in the state. If you're approached by a collector and have suspicions, ask to see a permit or ID before donating.
You should never give any personal or credit card information unless you initiated contact and trust the charity. It's also suggested you never place any money orders or wire transfers to charities. The BBB said if you do send money that way, it is very difficult to retrieve it.