Washington Secretary of State Sam Reed says people thinking about donating money in the wake of the deadly earthquake and tsunami in Japan should first check the charity is reputable.
Reed says that after Hurricane Katrina, con artists benefited from taking money that was meant for victims. To avoid that this time around, Reed advised donors on Friday to check if the charity group in question is registered with the Secretary of State's office.
Reed says that on the office's website donors can search by the charity's name. He says he doesn't want scammers to benefit from the tragedy.
An 8.9 earthquake struck off the northeastern corner of Japan on Friday and triggered a massive tsunami that has destroyed that part of the country.