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Special Alerts

SA-39-2006
February 27, 2006


TO: CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER (also of interest to Security Officer)
SUBJECT: Counterfeit Official Checks
Summary: Counterfeit official checks drawn on Union Bank of California, N.A., San Francisco, California, are reportedly in circulation.

Union Bank of California, National Association (N.A.), San Francisco, California, has contacted the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) to report that counterfeit checks bearing the institution's name are in circulation.

The counterfeit items display the routing number 121000497, which is assigned to Union Bank of California, N.A.; however, the counterfeit items are dissimilar to authentic cashier's checks in appearance. The counterfeit items bear a slightly altered bank logo, name, city, and state in the top-left corner and the words "OFFICIAL CHECK" in the top center. The counterfeit items are printed on "marbled" white paper and contain the statement: "THIS DOCUMENT HAS A COLORED BACKGROUND AND MICROPRINTING. THE REVERSE SIDE INCLUDES AN ARTIFICIAL WATERMARK." The counterfeit items do not display "void" security features if photocopied.

Authentic cashier's checks display the bank's logo next to the bank's name, city, state and toll-free telephone number in the upper-left corner. "CASHIER'S CHECK" appears in the top center of the check. Authentic checks are printed on blue paper with a white pattern and will display "void" security features when photocopied.

Copies of a counterfeit item and an authentic cashier's check (VOID) are attached for your review.

Any information you have concerning this matter should be brought to the attention of:

Clayton Manning
Assistant Vice President - Risk Investigations
Union Bank of California, N.A.
3151 East Imperial Highway
Brea, CA 92821
Telephone: (714) 985-2561
Fax: (714) 985-2235
E-mail: Clayton.Manning@uboc.com

Information about counterfeit items, cyber-fraud incidents and other fraudulent activity may be forwarded to the FDIC's Cyber-Fraud and Financial Crimes Section, 550 17th Street, N.W., Room F-4004, Washington, D.C. 20429, or transmitted electronically to alert@fdic.gov. Information related to federal deposit insurance or consumer issues should be submitted to the FDIC using an online form that can be accessed at http://www2.fdic.gov/starsmail/index.asp.

For your reference, FDIC Special Alerts may be accessed from the FDIC's Web site at www.fdic.gov/news/news/SpecialAlert/2006/index.html. To learn how to automatically receive FDIC Special Alerts through e-mail, please visit www.fdic.gov/about/subscriptions/index.html.

Sandra L. Thompson
Acting Director
Division of Supervision and Consumer Protection

Attachment (not available electronically)

NOTE: As a security precaution, the FDIC does not post to its Web site online copies of fraudulent instruments or copies of the genuine instruments that have been counterfeited. This is to avoid attempts by others to use the electronic versions of these instruments to facilitate additional fraud. Printed copies of fraudulent instruments are mailed with the Special Alert letter to the financial institutions on the letter's distribution list (generally, FDIC-supervised banks – commercial and savings). Printed copies of the Special Alert and its attachment(s) may also be obtained from the FDIC's Public Information Center, telephone: 1-877-275-3342 or 703-562-2200; fax: 703-562-2296; or e-mail: publicinfo@fdic.gov).

Distribution: FDIC-Supervised Banks (Commercial and Savings)




Last Updated 02/27/2006 communications@fdic.gov