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Alert 2015-16
Description: First Federal Bank of Ohio

Counterfeit Cashier’s Checks of First Federal Bank of Ohio, Galion, Ohio

To: Chief Executive Officers of All National Banks and Federal Savings Associations; All State Banking Authorities; Chair, 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 Counsels; and All Examining Personnel

The above-named bank has reported that counterfeit cashier’s checks using a correct routing number of 042000314 are being presented for payment nationwide in connection with online employment scams, which require the potential victim to wire transfer funds to a third party.

The counterfeit checks resemble the bank’s authentic checks; the counterfeit checks, however, may be identified by the following traits:

  • The checks contain the following security statement within a dark blue top border: “THIS DOCUMENT HAS A COLORED BACKGROUND AND MICRPRINTING. THE REVERSE SIDE INCLUDES AN ARTIFICIAL WATERMARK.”
  • The following notice appears (exactly as typed) above the authorized signature lines:
    DRAWEE: First Federal Bank of Ohio
    TWO SIGNATURES REQUIRED OVER $5, 000.00

Counterfeit checks presented to date have included a serial number beginning with the series number of 808 have been made payable in amounts between $1,680.65 and $2,880.45, and contain remitter names of Steve Brown, Raymond Carter, or Cindy Light.

E-mail correspondence initiating this scam may contain the name of Steve Brown, and e-mail address of [stevehkland@outlook.com], and a telephone number of (484) 212-1930.

Correspondence accompanying the counterfeit check may be signed by “Premier Research Group Inc.” and contain a cellphone number of (269) 533-4061 where text messages are to be sent.

For additional information and to verify the authenticity of checks drawn on First Federal Bank of Ohio, please contact Assistant Treasurer/Bookkeeping Sally Petrie by mail at 140 N. Columbus St., Galion, OH 44833, by telephone at (419) 468-1518, by fax at (419) 468-2973, or by e-mail at spetrie@firstfederalbankofohio.com.

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

  • Federal Trade Commission (FTC): by telephone at (877) FTC-HELP or, for filing a complaint electronically, via the FTC’s Web site.
  • National Consumers League (NCL): by telephone at (202) 835-3323 or by e-mail. To file a fraud complaint, visit the NCL fraud Web site.
  • 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 Web site 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.
 

Ellen M. Warwick
Director for Enforcement and Compliance