Beware of potential fraud during hurricanes

Beware of potential fraud during hurricanes

BATON ROUGE, LA (WVUE) - As part of hurricane preparedness week, the Louisiana Attorney General is reminding citizens to make fraud awareness part of their plans this hurricane season.

"It is important that Louisiana citizens are aware of how to avoid scams, especially in a disaster situation," said Attorney General Jeff Landry. "Some scammers see the aftermath of a natural disaster as an opportunity to take advantage of Louisiana residents trying to rebuild their homes and get their lives back to normal."

Hurricane Preparedness Week runs from May 15-21, 2016. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration wants people who live in hurricane-prone areas to use this week to determine their risk, develop an evacuation plan, secure an insurance check-up, assemble disaster supplies, strengthen your home, identify trusted sources of information during a storm event and complete a written hurricane plan for your family.

Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry also wants citizens to protect themselves from common disaster-related scams.

He offered the following tips:
•    Safeguard your personal information files by putting them in a secure, waterproof location such as a safe deposit box or home safe.
•    Verify potential contractors by contacting the Louisiana State Licensing Board for Contractors at (800)-256-1392.
•    Beware of price gouging and report any findings to Attorney General Landry's Consumer Protection hotline at (800) 351-4889 and to your local Sheriff or DA. 
•    Verify people posing as government officials or insurance adjusters by asking for proper identification. 
•    Be cautious of fake charities and verify them at

A consumer protection hotline is available at Landry's office for citizens to report a scam. The number is 800-351-4889.

Copyright 2016 WVUE. All rights reserved.