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USA Today is reporting that federal law enforcement agencies have taken more than 170 complaints about Haiti earthquake relief scams. They expect more on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter. The scams include spam email, fraudulent web sites and in-person scams.

The story advises those wishing to check on the legitimacy of a relief organization to check the web site of the American Institute of Philanthropy ( ), which rates charities.

The Institute says that charitable organizations should spend 75 percent of the cash they raise on their charitable work and no more than 25 percent on fund-raising expenses. Its web page lists several dozen legitimate charities providing relief for the victims of the Haiti earthquake here.

Story here.

Tom Kelchner