Charities are reportedly having millions of dollars diverted away from them by second-hand clothing exporters who are imitating appeals and donation bins.
According to an investigation by Fairfax, the exporters launch appeals that imply the goods will either be recycled or go towards charitable causes by using a variety of methods, including a network of bins and pictures of children in Third World countries.
To stay within the law, some even include a declaration in small-print, stating they are a commercial business but others reportedly use collection bags for fake charities.
National Association of Charitable Recycling chief executive Kerryn Caulfield said the losses to charities amounts in ‘‘the tens of millions’’.
‘‘It’s taking stock away from charities, it skews the lines of governance, puts doubt in the minds of the community and impacts on the employment opportunities for people with disabilities in these charities,’’ she told Fairfax.