Use caution when donating to storm relief, making storm repairs

AKRON, Ohio - Requests to help out victims and those affected by Hurricane Sandy will likely be common over the next several days.

The Summit County Office of Consumer Affairs urges people to be leery of fraudulent charitable contribution schemes and home repair scams.

Consumer Affairs Director Cynthia Sich said consumers should avoid donating money in response to social media messages, Facebook posts, Tweets and unsolicited emails or websites related to Hurricane Sandy. Sich said it's not uncommon for scam artists to use names that sound like popular organizations.

To make sure you know who you are dealing with Sich said call the Ohio Attorney General's Office at 1-800-282-0515 to see if the company is registered to fundraise in Ohio.

Sich also urges those who have storm damage to their home to check out any company that will make the repairs for you. You can check complaint history by calling the Summit County Office of Consumer Affairs at 330-643-2879.

For more consumer tips: www.co.summit.oh.us/conaffairs.htm

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