On Aug. 29, 2017, the IRS warned taxpayers about “possible fake charity scams emerging due to Hurricane Harvey.” Taxpayers should select recognized charitable groups as the recipients of their donations, the agency said. “People should be aware of criminals who look to take advantage of [the generosity that has been forthcoming] by impersonating charities to get money or private information from well-meaning taxpayers,” IRS said. Scammers may contact potential donors by telephone, social media, email or in-person solicitations, it added.
The agency recommended that people utilize a search feature on the IRS website, Exempt Organizations Select Check, which can be found at https://www.irs.gov/charities-non-profits/exempt-organizations-select-check. IRS also recommended that taxpayers consult Publication 526, Charitable Contributions, which is located at https://www.irs.gov/publications/p526/index.html.