By Amy Feldman

By Amy E. Feldman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – If you get a call on behalf of the Fraternal Order of Police, what do you do?

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Don’t you hate those solicitations raising money for the various police organizations – it’s the nagging feeling that you better not have a busted tail light if you don’t contribute. Of course you don’t need to worry about that when you’re dealing with a legitimate charity. The question is: how do you know?

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The Federal Trade Commission settled a complaint filed against a for-profit telemarketing operation that preyed on the goodwill of consumers by posing as police or firefighters, falsely implying that the consumer had previously pledged or donated to the charity and misled consumers about the use to which donations would be used.

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So, when you get a call you have the right not to remain silent: ask – are you a police officer? Who IS your employer? What percent of your money will be given to the charity? And then request that materials be sent in the mail before you think of putting your hands up…into your wallet.