Alert 2009-9| May 29, 2009

Counterfeit Cashier’s Checks: Counterfeit Cashier’s Checks of AMCORE Bank, N.A., Rockford, Ill.

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 cashier's checks issued in the bank's name and using a correct routing number of 071900456 are being presented for payment nationwide in connection with a secret shopping scam.

The counterfeit checks resemble the authentic items, but may be identified by the following traits: the instruments have been green or brown in color and include the following security statement in the top border: "For security purposes, the face of this check contains a colored background and microprinting in the border." The words "Cashier's Check" are enclosed in a darkened block and located in the top-center portion of the item. The following security statement is printed between two padlock icons in the bottom-center section: "Security Features Included. Details on Back."

Items presented to date have been made payable in the amounts of $3,995 and $4,595, have been signed by Barbara Miller, and have contained a remitter name of Helen V. Wheeler.

Due to possible variations between the appearance of the bank's authentic items and the counterfeit items associated with differing scams, officials of AMCORE Bank, N.A. suggest they be contacted to verify authenticity of the bank's cashier's checks if received from an unknown or questionable source.

Correspondence accompanying the counterfeit checks may contain the letterhead of "Global Relations Marketing, 3861 North Ridge Drive, Rockford, IL 61108, Fax: 1-888-305-0539" and may be signed by Donna Hamilton, Co-ordinator. It is explained that the enclosed cashier's check is to be used during the assignment to make purchases at various merchants and to transfer money using a nationally known wire service. Recipients are instructed to contact the assignment coordinator at 1-905-598-1753 upon receipt of the correspondence.

For additional information and guidance, and to verify the authenticity of AMCORE Bank, N.A.'s checks, please contact Gary Cooper, Security Manager, 501 Seventh Street, PO Box 1537, Rockford, IL 61110-0037, by telephone at (815) 961-7180 or via email at [gary.cooper@amcore.com].

Consumers who receive counterfeit or fictitious items and associated material should file complaints with the following agencies, as appropriate:

  • U.S. Department of the Treasury, Office of Inspector General (OIG): by telephone at (800) 359-3898 or by visiting the OIG website.
  • Federal Trade Commission (FTC): by telephone at (877) FTC-HELP or, for filing a complaint electronically, via the FTC's website.
  • National Consumers League (NCL): by telephone at (202) 835-3323 or by email. To file a fraud complaint, visit the NCL fraud website.
  • Better Business Bureau (BBB): 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 website offers contact information for local BBBs, objective reports on more than 2 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 Internet Crime Complaint Center (to report scams that may have originated via the internet).
  • If correspondence is received via the U.S. Postal Service, contact the U.S. Postal Inspection Service by telephone at (888) 877-7644; by mail at U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Office of Inspector General, Operations Support Group, 222 S. Riverside Plaza, Suite 1250, Chicago, IL 60606-6100; or via the online complaint form.

Additional information concerning this matter that should be brought to the attention of the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) may be forwarded to

Office of the Comptroller of the Currency
Special Supervision Division
400 7th St. SW, Suite 3E-218; MS 8E-12
Washington, DC 20219
Phone: (202) 649-6450
Fax: (571) 293-4925
www.occ.gov
occalertresponses@occ.treas.gov

For additional information regarding other types of financial fraud, please visit the OCC's anti-fraud resources page.

Richard C. Stearns
Director for Enforcement & Compliance