Charity Fraud
American Red Cross National Headquarters Statement on Internet Fraud


Scientology's doublecross

News Release:
American Red Cross National Headquarters Statement on Internet Fraud

American Red Cross Contact: Kelly Alexander
Phone: (202) 639-3591
Pager: (888) 641-3823

National Headquarters
17th Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20006

The American National Red Cross is aware that false Red Cross Websites and e-mail campaigns directing donations to sites other than those authorized by the American Red Cross have begun to appear. We have also learned of a number of Websites soliciting donations, allegedly on our behalf.

In order to ensure that all donations appropriately make their way to our organization, are properly acknowledged for tax purposes, and to express our deepest thanks for the generosity of the American public, we have established formal agreements with sites collecting donations. These agreements offer the donating public the assurance that those collecting funds on our behalf will be held to the high standards of stewardship the public expects from the American Red Cross.

For those who are using the American Red Cross name and emblem without our written permission, Federal statutes prohibit the use of the name and emblem of the Red Cross by commercial concerns and unauthorized solicitations.

Section 706 of Title 18 of the United States Code contains the following provisions:

"Whoever wears or displays the sign of the Red Cross or any insignia colored in imitation thereof for the fraudulent purpose of inducing the belief that he is a member of or an agent for the American National Red Cross; or "Shall be fined...or imprisoned." (18 United States Code, Section 706).

Also, from Section 917 of Title 18 of the United States Code:

"Whoever, within the United States, falsely or fraudulently holds himself out as or represents or pretends himself to be a member of or an agent for the American National Red Cross for the purpose of soliciting, collecting, or receiving money or material, shall be fined not more than $500 or imprisoned not more than one year, or both." (18 United States Code, Section 917).

The American Red Cross will work with authorities to prosecute offenders to the full extent of the law.

The main American Red Cross Website is The online donation system Web addresses are and

Our five current online donation partners are:
AOL Time Warner (added 9/14/2001)
Wells Fargo Bank (added 9/14/2001)
Yahoo! Inc.

Hundreds of additional corporate supporters have linkage agreements with the American Red Cross. If you would like to formally link your company, please contact

If you have questions about the legitimacy of a Website, please contact the American Red Cross Online Media Department


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