Date: April 16, 2010
Fraudulent Correspondence Regarding the Release of Funds Supposedly under the Control of the Comptroller of the Currency
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; Conference of State Bank Supervisors; Deputy Comptrollers (districts); Assistant Deputy Comptrollers; District Counsel and All Examining Personnel
A variety of fictitious correspondence, allegedly issued by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) regarding funds purportedly under the control of the OCC and other government entities is in circulation. Correspondence may be distributed via e-mail, fax, or postal mail.
Any document claiming that the OCC is involved in holding any funds for the benefit of any individual or entity is fraudulent. The OCC does not participate in the transfer of funds for, or on behalf of, individuals, business enterprises, or governmental entities.
The letters may indicate that funds are being held by the Comptroller of the Currency or Comptroller General due to the need for a Certified International Transfer Permit Document.
Attached are copies of this fraudulent correspondence, which is being sent to United States bank customers in an attempt to elicit funds from them and to gather personal information to be used in possible future identity theft.
The correspondence in question contains forged signatures of actual OCC officials as well as signatures of fictitious OCC officials. In addition, some materials contain fictitious telephone numbers, mailing addresses, and e-mail addresses that are not associated with the OCC.
Before responding in any manner to any proposal supposedly issued by the OCC that requests personal information or personal account information, or that requires the payment of any fee in connection with the proposal, you should take steps to verify that the proposal is legitimate. At a minimum, the OCC recommends that you:
- Contact the OCC directly to verify the legitimacy of the proposal, either: (1) via e-mail at email@example.com; (2) by mail to the OCC’s Special Supervision Division, 250 E Street, SW; Mail Stop 7-4, Washington, DC 20219; (3) via fax to (202) 874-5214; or (4) by calling the Special Supervision Division at (202) 874-4450;
- Contact state and/or local law enforcement;
- If the proposal appears to be fraudulent and was received via e-mail or the Internet, please file a complaint with the Internet Crime Complaint Center at http://www.ic3.gov;
- If the proposal appears to be fraudulent and was delivered through the U.S. Postal Service, please file a complaint with the U.S. Postal Inspection 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.
Any information regarding the subject of this or any other alert that you wish to bring to the attention of the OCC may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Richard C. Stearns
Director for Enforcement & Compliance