State officials warn public of natural disaster scams ahead of hurricane season

Connecticut

(WTNH) — The Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Consumer Protection and other agencies are asking you to be vigilant following a series of scams.

There’s nothing better than Connecticut’s shoreline in the summer, but as we’re approaching Connecticut’s traditional hurricane season, state officials are warning the public of scams that take advantage of people in the wake of natural disasters.

Storm damage often puts families and business owners in the difficult position to make expensive repairs quickly, making them vulnerable to scams. Scammers often offer cleanup or repair services at a low price you’re willing to pay upfront.

By law, home improvement projects must have a contract. You should ask for credential information, identification, proof of insurance, and make sure there is a written signed contract. You can verify credentials by visiting http://www.elicense.ct.gov.

In the wake of a natural disaster, don’t we all want to help? Scammers take advantage of our good nature and will create fake charities. Always research a charity before giving by visiting sites like www.CharityNavigator.org, www.GuideStar.org, or www.give.org and ask questions about how your donation will be used.

Natural disasters sometimes cause unemployment, Especially now on top of the job market we’re seeing right now Remember that you should never have to pay to apply for a job or to start a job. If a job posting guarantees employment, you should be suspicious.

It’s important to note, as severe storms are happening in other parts of the country, scammers will try to sell severely water damaged cars out of state. Be wary of used cars after any natural disaster and always do a thorough inspection

If you believe you have fallen victim to a scam, or if you notice a scam, you should report it to DCP by visiting www.ct.gov/DCP/complaint or to the Better Business Bureau’s Scamtracker at www.bbb.org/scamtracker 

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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