• Devastating Mariginiup bushfire a likely target for callous scammers
  • Donors urged to be wary of fake websites and bogus social media posts
  • Advice to only donate via Lord Mayor’s Distress Fund or licensed charities

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Kind-hearted Western Australians looking to donate to the victims of the Mariginiup bushfire are being warned by Consumer Protection to be wary of scammers who may set up fake charity fundraisers.

Individuals who wish to raise funds for victims are also reminded that collecting money for a charitable purpose requires a licence, or the involvement of a licensed charity.

Consumer Protection is yet to receive any scam reports associated with the recent bushfire disaster, but Commissioner Trish Blake believes it’s only a matter of time until scammers strike.

“Heartless scammers are known to capitalise on the vulnerable by pretending to raise money for individual victims or the affected community via fake websites and social media posts,” Ms Blake said.

“You might also be approached by scammers via unsolicited emails and text messages, so the best advice is avoid clicking on any links received in these ways and never hand over personal information like email addresses, phone numbers or bank details to people you don’t know.

“These cruel scams not only steal money from the generous donors who want to help, but they also take away much-needed funds from the victims of these disasters as well.” 

To help those impacted by the Mariginiup bushfire, Consumer Protection recommends making donations to the Lord Mayor’s Distress Relief Fund, which is now actively accepting donations via the official website: https://appealswa.org.au/.

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