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Consumer Alert

Don't be Taken by the Latest Fraudulent Check Cashing Scam

Check cashing scams continue to be a serious and pressing problem. In these scams, individuals are offered a fraudulent check to deposit. In the scam, the individual is told to keep a portion of the money from the check  possibly for a lottery winning or a work at home offer, or some other solicitation and then given instructions to wire another portion of the funds to a distant location.

Here's how it works

  • You receive an exciting offer to make money on a lottery, work at home deal, or to help a sick/distant relative
  • All you have to do is deposit the enclosed check with your bank, keep a portion of the money and wire the remaining funds back as instructed in the letter or email solicitation

However, the check you received and deposited into your account is fraudulent!

Do not assume the check is good because the bank has released the check hold and the funds are available in your account. It can be several more days, or longer, before the bank is made aware that the check you deposited is not good, and is in fact fraudulent.

In those circumstances, the bank will charge the full amount of the check back against your account. If you no longer have enough funds in your account for the full amount of the check, it will cause an overdrawn balance. You will be held responsible for reimbursing the bank.

Your best protection is to be alert to these check scams and other fraudulent solicitations that you might receive in the mail or through email. For further information on protecting yourself, your identity and your financial assets, please see "Tips to Prevent Identity Theft" and "Phishing and Email Scams"

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