Date: November 19, 2007
Counterfeit Official Checks of Integra Bank, N.A., Evansville, IN
To: Chief Executive Officers of All National Banks; All State Banking Authorities; Chairman, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System; Chairman, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation; Director, Office of Thrift Supervision; Conference of State Bank Supervisors; Deputy Comptrollers (districts); Assistant Deputy Comptrollers; District Counsel; and All Examining Personnel
The above-named bank has reported that counterfeit official checks issued in the bank’s name and using a correct routing number of 022000868 are being presented for payment nationwide in connection with a lottery scam.
The counterfeit checks are similar to the bank’s authentic item; however, counterfeits may be identified by the following: the background is blue and pink in color, the bank’s logo in the lower-left corner appears as three circles instead of interlocking rings, the following security statement is located in the top border: "THIS CHECK IS VOID WITHOUT A RED & BLUE BORDER AND BACKGROUND PLUS A KNIGHT & FINGERPRINT WATERMARK ON THE BANK. HOLD AT ANGLE TO VIEW," and the following security phrase follows the signature line in the bottom-right portion of the check: "SIGNATURE AREA CONTAINS A KNIGHT & FINGERPRINT CHECK WORDING."
Checks presented to date have been made payable in the amount of $4,825.00, are dated 10/05/2007, and use a remitter name of "Heidi Clark." Due to possible variations in appearance of the counterfeit items and scams, it is suggested that officials of Integra Bank, N.A. be contacted to verify authenticity of the bank’s official checks, if received from an unknown or questionable source.
Correspondence accompanying the counterfeit instruments may contain the letterhead of "Excel Lottery Gaming Corporation (ELGC), PO Box 7652, St. John, Virgin Islands 00831." The letter alerts the recipient that he or she is the winner of an unclaimed prize associated with a lottery. The letter further states that the enclosed check is to be used to pay applicable taxes, which should be paid either by MoneyGram or Western Union. Recipients are instructed to contact claim agent Mr. Steve Adams at 1-778-863-7898 by a specific date or risk forfeiting the prize. Note that this telephone number originates in British Columbia. The letter may be signed by Larry Watts.
For additional information and guidance or to verify the authenticity of Integra Bank, N.A.’s official checks, please contact Gary Fein, Fraud Investigator, 21 SE Third Street, PO Box 868, Evansville, IN 47705-0868, by telephone at (812) 464-9672, or via e-mail at [firstname.lastname@example.org].
Consumers who receive a counterfeit item and associated material should file complaints with the following agencies, as appropriate:
- Federal Trade Commission (FTC): by telephone at 1-877-FTC-HELP or, for filing a complaint electronically, via the FTC’s Internet site at www.ftc.gov.
- Royal Canadian Mounted Police (Canadian Scams): by telephone at 1-888-495-8501 or via e-mail at [email@example.com]. Their Web site, www.phonebusters.com, provides additional contact numbers.
- Better Business Bureau – The BBB system serves markets throughout Canada, Puerto Rico, and the United States, and is the marketplace leader in advancing trust between businesses and consumers. The international Web site (www.bbb.org) offers contact information for local BBBs, objective reports on more than two million businesses, consumer scam alerts, and tips on a wide variety of topics that help consumers find trustworthy businesses and make wise purchasing decisions.
- Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Internet Fraud Complaint Center (Scams that may have originated via the Internet) at www.ic3.gov
- If correspondence is received via the U.S. Postal Service, contact the U.S. Postal Inspector Service by telephone at 1-888-877-7644, by mail at U.S. Postal Inspection Service, 222 S. Riverside Plaza, Suite 1250, Chicago, IL 60606-6100, or via e-mail at https://postalinspectors.uspis.gov/forms/MailFraudComplaint.aspx.
Additional information concerning this matter that you believe should be brought to the attention of the OCC may be forwarded to:
Mail: Office of the Comptroller of the Currency
Special Supervision Division, MS 6-4
250 E Street, SW, Washington, DC 20219
For additional information on this and other types of financial fraud, please visit OCC’s anti-fraud resource at: https://www.occ.gov/topics/consumer-protection/fraud-resources/index-fraud-resources.html.
Richard C. Stearns
Director for Enforcement & Compliance