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  • iStock/Thinkstock(PARKLAND, Fla.) -- After the third deadliest school shooting in U.S. history Wednesday afternoon in Florida, a number of people and organizations have found ways to extend a hand to the affected Florida communities, including GoFundMe campaigns that state officials vow to shield from any would-be scammers.“If you think you’re going to scam people during this tragedy, you’re not,” state Attorney General Pam Bondi reportedly warned this week.The Broward Education Foundation, which raises money for the public school system, has set up a GoFundMe page.GoFundMe has removed campaigns with no direct connection to the victims in the shooting or their families, spokesman Bobby Whithorne told ABC News via email.The Broward County Sheriff's Office Thursday tweeted that there have been "several fraudulent @gofundme accounts" created and posted a link to the correct one.GoFundMe’s Whithorne said, "We guarantee the money raised by those campaigns will be transferred to the right person.”“We will continue to monitor the platform and will stay in close touch with Florida officials.”Meanwhile, Premier Family Health and Wellness, a health care center in Wellington, Florida, is hosting a blood drive on Friday until 4 p.m., according to a news release.Ryan Mackman, the center’s business administrator, is a friend and former classmate of Aaron Feis, the football coach who was among the 17 people killed in the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, the news release said.One Blood, a Florida-based blood center, Wednesday night delivered additional blood to the Broward Health North Hospital, which treated massacre victims.One Blood said in a news release it is especially interested in donations of O-negative blood, which is the universal type and primarily used to treat trauma patients.Public Good, an online organization that partners with reputable nonprofits to distribute various donations, is collating trustworthy sites.
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  • ABC News(NEW YORK) -- Those looking for love on dating sites, apps and social media should beware of the "massive number of fraudsters" using so-called romance scams to "gain unsuspecting people's trust to steal their money," a new study published by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) warns."People all over the world are being ripped off by these same frauds," Steve Baker, an internal investigation specialist with the BBB, told ABC News. "We got a real global problem."These romance scams have cost victims in the U.S. and Canada nearly $1 billion in just the past three years, and impacted an estimated 1 million victims in the U.S. alone, according to the BBB.Complaints from victims of online romance scams are also on the rise -- up from 21,000 in 2015 to 28,000 in 2017 -- according to the BBB. In addition, reports to the FBI about online romance scams tripled in the last five years.The Federal Trade Commission estimates, however, that 90 percent of victims don't report the scam, meaning the actual number of victims could likely be much higher.Romance scams often begin with a "grooming phase" where the scammer learns about the victim's life and sends text messages or notes that profess admiration, and eventually love.One victim of these scams, who spoke to ABC News on the condition it not name her or show her face, said that she met a man on Facebook who eventually stole $1,000 from her."He said that he was a single father ... that he was a widower," she told ABC News."He said ... he had a really bad cellphone," she added. "And that’s when I said I guess I can help you.""The second time I sent him money ... he said he was having problems paying his car," she said.He then asked for her bank information, and she says that is when she called him out and he admitted that he was a "scammer.""I said, 'You are a scammer,'" she told ABC News. "That’s when he said ... 'I am in love with you and that’s why I’m telling you the truth ... yes, I am a scammer.'"Another person targeted by an online romance scam, Donna Rodgers, told ABC News that she met her scammer on the dating app Zoosk, and he pampered her with gifts during the first weeks, but then asked her for more than $1,500."It was overwhelming," Rogers said. She said that she didn't send the money and immediately contacted authorities.Both Facebook and Zoosk told ABC News that they try to monitor and block suspicious behavior.Zoosk says it has photo verification services to help combat online scams. Both companies, however, say that consumer awareness and vigilance are also key to fight and prevent online romance scams.Baker told ABC News that anyone who may have been a victim of online romance scams and sent money through Western Union may be able to get their money back.Information on how to get their money back is available on the FTC's website, he added."They don't even have to have their original Western Union receipts as long as they know how much money they sent, and the location they sent it from, and the date I think," he added. "There's a good chance they can get some money back."Baker said that the money transfer services Western Union and MoneyGram are making "more efforts to protect people."If you were scammed as far back as 2004 all the way through January 2017, he recommends filing a claim on the FTC's website."I don't know if people will get full refunds we hope that they would, but it depends on how many claims that are filed," he added.Baker said that he thinks there are still steps he thinks the dating sites and apps can do to "warn their victims.""We would like for them to increase their efforts to try to get the crooks off their websites; in other words to screen profiles of folks before they appear on the dating sites," he said. "And if the dating sites find a profile they conclude is fraudulent, maybe because its paid with a stolen credit card, we would like the dating site to contact everyone who have been in contact with the profile."
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  • iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- A second lawsuit has been filed claiming popular beauty store chain Ulta resells returned products and bills them as new.A complaint filed last week in an Illinois circuit court comes less than a month after the first lawsuit filed by a California woman alleging Ulta has a practice of reselling returned products to customers who believe they are purchasing new and unused cosmetics.The latest complaint details Ulta's alleged return policies. The beauty store chain allows customers to return beauty products if they are "unsatisfied" with their purchase, according to the complaint. Ulta employees are required to ask customers making returns if they used the product. Used products are then placed in a "damage bin," but this new complaint alleges former employees say there is a quota for how many returned items can be deemed "damaged," meaning used products are ending up back on the shelf.The latest complaint claims a former manager of an Ohio store told Business Insider, "We would literally get lectured by our boss on our conference calls if our stores were over" that quota.As a result, the complaint alleges Ulta employees routinely restock used beauty products and sell them as new, potentially exposing customers to harmful bacteria, including E. coli and another bacteria commonly found in feces.The allegations first came to light last month when a woman who claims to be a former employee of Ulta alleged on Twitter that employees were instructed to "repackage/reseal the item and put it back on the shelf" when customers made returns.Ulta spokesperson Karen May told ABC News in a statement, "Ulta Beauty's policies and practices do not allow the resale of used, damaged or expired products. As the nation's largest beauty retailers, we take protecting the integrity of the products we sell very seriously. Based on our review of these allegations, we are confident that our stores uphold our policies and practices. Assertions to the contrary are inconsistent with what we stand for."Attorney Tom Zimmerman, who is representing the customer who filed the second lawsuit, told ABC News the lawsuit is seeking to change the quota for how many returned products can be thrown away and compensate customers who bought used products.
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  • Genevieve Shaw Brown(NEW YORK) -- Travel experts tell ABC News what their picks are for "the most romantic place I've ever been."Genevieve Shaw Brown, ABC NewsAs an award-winning travel journalist traveling the world for years, the upcoming Valentine's Day holiday got me thinking about the most romantic place I'd ever been.I started wondering how that compared to other world wanderers' most romantic places, so I asked some travel experts to share with "Good Morning America" the one place in the world that's captured their hearts the most.From Bora Bora to Italy and lots of places in between, here are our various picks for "the most romantic place I've ever been."For me, the most romantic place is Turtle Island, Fiji.The resort where I stayed is only accessible by sea plane and you're greeted by the staff with a welcome song upon landing. But what makes Turtle Island so romantic is the element of privacy. There are only 14 couples booked at any one time and 14 beaches, so guests have a private beach every day of their visit, assigned each morning. Champagne picnics are the norm as are private dinners on pontoons, in the mountains or beachside. If you do want to interact with your fellow guests -- and you probably will, there's nightly group dinners, as well.Aside from the romantic nature of Turtle Island, there's something so special about the staff. From the moment you arrive on the island, you are treated like family. The Fijian people who live and work on Turtle Island are some of the most welcoming, caring people I've ever come across in my travels.Lee Abbamonte, youngest American to travel to every country in the world"The Seychelles has to be the most romantic place in the world. It’s many, varied islands are perfect for couples to explore nature and have some of the worlds best beaches all to themselves. Whether it’s riding bikes on tranquil La Digue or staying in a perfectly cultivated luxury resort on Mahe, the Seychelles just oozes romance. Meet you there?"Lee Abbamonte is a New York City-based travel blogger, on-air travel personality and entrepreneur who has been to all 193 United Nations member states, the North Pole and the South Pole.Yana and Timon Peskin, Beard & Curly"New Zealand is the most romantic place we have ever been. Our idea of a romantic getaway is to escape the crowds and get into nature. We spent a few days at a charming bed and breakfast while searching for our favorite local winery. Most of our time was hiking in the South Island of New Zealand. Nothing says I love you like a hike to an empty mountain hut and cuddling up to a warm cozy fire."Yana and Timon from beardandcurly.com quit their jobs in 2015 to pursue their passion and travel the world. They are travel junkies and love exploring new cultures and mountain peaks. Their blog focuses on photography, country guides, and budget travel tips.Kimia Kalbasi, Founder of Kimia’s Kravings"Hands downs, the most romantic place I’ve ever been to is Bora Bora undoubtedly. Bora Bora simply equates to all of your tropical dreams come to life. There are pristine bluer than blue waters, glistening white sand, and majestic, dreamy bungalows tucked away at every turn. Unlike some other tropical destinations, Bora Bora is truly secluded and feels like your own private island. In fact, it’s so private that the same number of people who visit Hawaii in a week equates to the same number of people who visit Bora Bora annually. Bora Bora epitomizes the perfect romantic getaway."Kimia Kalbasi (@KimiasKravings) is a travel + food + lifestyle influencer, blogger and content creator based in NYC. She is the Founder of Kimia’s Kravings. Kimia’s Kravings is your ultimate tour guide for to where to eat, drink and be merry. She’s visited countless destinations from Bora Bora to Turks & Caicos to Hawaii to Tulum and countless travel spots in between.Johnny Jet, Founder of www.JohnnyJet.com"The island of Taha'a! It&rsqu
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  • Scott Pattenden (copyright 2017)/courtesy RM Sotheby's(NEW YORK) -- Mamma Mia! That’s some price for a 41-year-old, cassette-playing BMW once used by Swedish band Abba, one of the world’s most successful pop groups of all time.The stylish 1977 BMW 633, with nearly 125,000 miles behind it, sold at auction in Paris by RM Sotheby’s for about $42,500, nearly a record for that particular model, according to car specialist Felix Archer of RM Sotheby’s.“An equivalent of this car, with the same mileage of 200,000 kilometers and in such good condition, but without Abba attached to It, would sell for between [roughly $12,400 and $18.600],” he told ABC News. “Abba’s influence is bigger than you can imagine.”Abba -- which turned out hits like “Dancing Queen,” “Chiquitita” and the iconic “Mamma Mia!” -- used the Polaris silver BMW on European tours from 1978 to 1980 and as a discrete everyday car for members Bjorn Ulvaeus or Benny Andersson. They sold it in 1980, according to RM Sotheby’s.Two then-married couples -- Ulvaeus and Agnetha Faltskog, and Andersson and Frida Lyngstad -- formed the quartet in the early-1970s, producing disco-era Swedish-made, English-language pop songs.The car, with leather seats and electric windows, sold last week with copies of the original documents signed by Ulvaeus and Andersson.
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