Beware of Burma fraud, say experts

Fraud experts have warned charities to be aware of potential donation scams that claim to raise money for those affected by the recent cyclone in Burma.

The Fraud Advisory Panel, a charity set up by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales, is concerned about a repeat of previous fake charity collections in the wake of the Asian tsunami of December 2004 and the London tube bombings of 7 July 2005.

"We are raising the alarm and telling charities to be on red alert," said Dr Stephen Hill, trustee director of the panel. "As soon as there is a major disaster, you will get organisations taking advantage by sending out emails trying to raise funds."

The panel has asked donors to report any bogus emails to the charity concerned.

The Charity Commission has issued new guidance to help charities maximise funds collected for Burma and avoid overlap. See www.charitycommission.gov.uk/news/burma.asp for more details.

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