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Scammers goal Turkey-Syria earthquake: How to identify a fake appeal

Unfortunately, scammers will all the time benefit from global events, especially when there’s a natural disaster or war. They use human goodwill to benefit from heartbreak and suffering. While this may increasingly seem disgusting to most of us, there are cruel people on the market.

Now scammers are benefiting from the earthquake damage in Turkey and Syria to trick people into donating to fake appeals.

Fraudsters often claim to lift money for survivors and people in need, nonetheless the cash is diverted from real charities helping people and putting the money into their very own pockets.

More than 35,000 people died within the disasters, and 1000’s of survivors were left without warmth, water, food, homes and family members. Therefore, it is crucial to make sure that you’re donating to an actual cause in order that the financial aid could be used fairly.

Here are a number of the scams to observe out for and methods to spot a real attraction.


Social media platforms could be used for good purposes when raising money because you possibly can reach a big audience immediately. However, they can be used to use tragedies, and scammers are quick to trick people.

On Twitter particularly, persons are sharing pictures of the damage together with links to cryptocurrency wallets. Touching images together with text asking for donations is usually a trap.

According to the BBC, a lot of the photographs are usually not even real and plenty of of the photographs have been generated by artificial intelligence, most notably photos of firefighters and other emergency services people holding young children as in the event that they had been rescued. This AI-generated content makes it easier for people to appeal for money without using photos directly from the event.

Some of those Twitter accounts are spamming their pages with links to crypto wallets and PayPal. Many of the links were found to have been previously used on Twitter in times of devastation, suggesting scammers are using the identical links for various world events, claiming they serve a selected cause.


Many Twitter users are also directing people to donate directly via PayPal. Scammers create fake fundraising accounts with links to PayPal accounts, which frequently become their personal PayPal accounts.

Some PayPal fundraisers have already collected a whole lot of donations. The key’s to concentrate as to whether the fundraising site itself has donated to the cause – in that case, it might indicate that the account is legitimate.

It’s essential to notice that PayPal has not been operating in Turkey since 2016, and any accounts claiming to be in Turkey are likely not real.


The TikTok video sharing platform is probably the most downloaded and used apps worldwide. During TikTok Live, a real-time live video where content creators can interact with their followers, they’ll earn money by buying gifts from viewers.

However, that is utilized by scammers who loop videos of destruction and news clips describing events and asking for donations. This is one other way scammers use emotional visuals to get people at hand over money.

Some videos even consist of images from recent earthquakes – well, you’d imagine it. The BBC conducted a reverse image search and located that one in all the photographs was first shared on Twitter in 2018.

earthquake victim in turkey and stria

How to donate safely

While there are cruel individuals who attempt to benefit from disasters through fake aid and fundraiser sites, that shouldn’t stop you from donating to a real charity or fundraiser if you wish to help.

It is vital to research charities before donating, especially smaller or lesser known ones. You can search Register of UK Charities. If you think fraud or discover what you think is fraud, please report it to Action Fraud and the social media platform in order that they can take it down.

Please note that disturbing and disturbing images, videos, sounds and language are used to encourage donations. Take a step back from donating and do your research. Don’t rush anything.

If you choose to donate to a charity or to the governments of the countries concerned, check them directly. There are many fake social media accounts claiming to be affiliated with various charities and organizations – direct donations can avoid money falling into the pockets of scammers.

If someone calls you asking for a donation, ask a lot of questions. A real charity or charitable organization will probably be glad to reply any questions and take the time to clear your doubts. If the caller seems impatient and desirous to receive a donation, hang up. Always hang up for those who are unsure.

Other ways to assist earthquake victims in Turkey and Syria could be found on the federal government website. Click here.

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