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Special Alerts

SA-229-2007
August 16, 2007


TO: CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER (also of interest to Security Officer)
SUBJECT: Counterfeit Official Checks
Summary: Counterfeit official checks bearing the name Century Bank, Santa Fe, New Mexico, are reportedly in circulation.

Century Bank, FSB, Santa Fe, New Mexico, has contacted the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) to report that counterfeit official checks bearing the institution's name are in circulation. The counterfeit items are reportedly associated with a European lottery scam.

The counterfeit items display the routing number 096016765, which is a payable-through account with U.S. Bank, St. Paul, Minnesota. Century Bank, FSB, issues official checks through U.S. Bank. The counterfeit items are dissimilar to authentic official checks and are green in color. The items display the misspelled word "REMMITER" in the top-center area and an incorrect zip code ("87604") in the bank's address in the top-left corner. The counterfeit items also display the following security feature statements within a darkened top border: "THIS DOCUMENT HAS AUTHENTIC WATERMARK WHICH READS 'ORIGINAL DOCUMENT'. HOLD UP TO THE LIGHT TO VIEW INVISIBLE FLUORESCENT FIBERS."

Authentic official checks are blue in color with blue print except for the word "BANK," which is printed in red. The words "OFFICIAL CHECK" are displayed in white print inside of a rectangle with rounded corners in the top center. In the top portion is a white thumb print area with "RUB HERE" printed above and "COLOR FADES WITH HEAT©" printed below. The following security feature statements are displayed in white print within a dark blue top border: "THIS DOCUMENT HAS AN ARTIFICIAL WATERMARK PRINTED ON THE BACK. THE FRONT OF THE DOCUMENT HAS A MICRO-PRINT SIGNATURE LINE, AND THERMOCHROMIC. ABSENCE OF THESE FEATURES WILL INDICATE A COPY."

Copies of a counterfeit item and an authentic check (VOID) are attached for your review. Be aware that the appearance of counterfeit items can be modified and that additional variations may be presented.

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

Joseph Ortiz
Deposit Operations
Century Bank, FSB
2108 Warner Avenue
Santa Fe, New Mexico 87505
Telephone: (505) 424-2841
Fax: (505) 424-2883
E-mail: joseph.ortiz@centurybnk.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. Questions 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 website at www.fdic.gov/news/news/SpecialAlert/2007/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
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 electronic images of fraudulent items or authentic checks that have been counterfeited. This is to avoid attempts by others to use these instruments to facilitate additional fraud. Financial institutions can view images of the fraudulent items and authentic checks (marked as VOID) using the FDIC's free, secure Web site, FDICconnect. (See more information about FDICconnect at http://www.fdic.gov/news/news/financial/2006/fil06032.html.) Printed copies of each 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 8/16/2007 communications@fdic.gov