Sick scammers trying to profit from earthquake in Turkey and Syria by posting fake appeals on TikTok

SCAMMERS are trying to profit from the devastating earthquake in Turkey and Syria by posting fake appeals on TikTok and Twitter.

The crooks use emotive pictures to ask for cash and trick donors into transferring money into their bank accounts rather than to genuine charities.

Faez Ghanam and wife Fatma were saved after 209 hours trapped in the rubbleGettyCampaigners fear money is going to fraudsters after TikTok clips were shared that are not linked to any official groupsGetty

One fake image shows a firefighter with six fingers holding a girl.

TikTok videos have been made with the captions “Please help Turkey” and “Lets help Turkey”.

The clips are not linked to any official groups and campaigners fear money is going to fraudsters.

Today’s warning came as the toll from February 6’s quake rose to nearly 38,000 — but Faez Ghanam and wife Fatma were rescued from a collapsed building after 209 hours in Kahramanmaras, Turkey.

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Helen Stephenson, chief executive of the Charity Commission said: “Scammers will find new ways to try and trick people into directing funds away from people in need.

“However, the public shouldn’t let this stop them from contributing to help people dealing with the shocking impacts of the earthquakes.”

She urged people to be wary and check a charity, collection or appeal is genuine before donating — such as going to to view the Charity Register.

Some Twitter posts made by criminals include links to PayPal accounts or directions to donate in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

PayPal has not been available in Turkey since 2016.

It said “While the vast majority of people using PayPal to accept donations have the best intentions, there are some who attempt to prey on the charitable nature and generosity of others.”

It added that its teams were “working diligently to scrutinise and ban accounts so that donations go to intended causes”.

TikTok said: “We’re actively working to prevent people from scamming and misleading community members who want to help.”

Scan this QR code to donate to The Sun Earthquake Appeal to help victimsMoney is still needed to support vital humanitarian work


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