FRANKFORT, Ky. — Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron issued a consumer alert Tuesday warning residents they may receive calls from scammers pretending to be relief organizations following the tornadic storms.
Cameron said the scammers are trying to access banking information. To avoid being a victim, the attorney general's office offered these tips:
- Charitable or relief organizations won't ask for banking information
- Make sure you're giving to well-known and respect relief organizations, such as the Team Western Kentucky Tornado Relief Fund established by the Commonwealth
- Follow FEMA's best practices for giving and volunteering for organizations — those tips can be found here
“Kentuckians in many of our Western and Central counties have already suffered devastating losses, and we are going to do everything in our power to ensure they do not encounter further losses as a result of scams,” Cameron wrote in a statement. “Bad actors should be put on notice that we will not tolerate scams and fraud in our communities. Potential scams should be reported immediately to our office by visiting ag.ky.gov/scams.”
The attorney general's office also warned of out-of-town contractors going door to door of those who have been affected by the storms, soliciting business. While not all of them will be scammers, it's possible. To avoid being a victim of a contractor-related scam, residents can:
- Contact your insurance company and discuss your policy coverage and filing requirements with your insurance company
- Ask your adjuster for an estimate for repair costs and save receipts for food, temporary lodging or anything else that is covered by your insurance company
- Research contractors or repair companies and get more than one estimate
- Do not feel forced to make a decision if a contactor offers "special pricing," as they could be using high-pressure sales tactics
- Don't pay a contractor or business upfront
- Don't sign insurance checks to the contractor and be sure to get an invoice from the contractor so you can pay them directly
- Don't sign any documents giving your contractor rights to insurance claims
Cameron said his office hasn't received any calls related to scams yet, but wants Kentuckians to remain vigilant.