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Special Alerts

SA-138-2006
May 4, 2006


TO: CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER (also of interest to Security Officer)
SUBJECT: Counterfeit Official Checks
Summary: Counterfeit official checks bearing the name of Gateway Bank & Trust Co. are reportedly in circulation.

Gateway Bank & Trust Company, Elizabeth City, North Carolina, 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 display the routing number 011007092, which is assigned to Boston Safe Deposit & Trust Company, Boston, Massachusetts. The bank issues official checks through MoneyGram Payment Systems Inc., Minneapolis, Minnesota, payable through Boston Safe Deposit & Trust Company. The counterfeit items are similar in appearance to authentic checks. However, the counterfeit items have the following statement embedded in the top border: "THIS DOCUMENT HAS A COLORED BACKGROUND AND MICROPRINTING. THE REVERSE SIDE INCLUDES AN ARTIFICIAL WATERMARK." The routing number appears below the bottom border line of the counterfeit items.

Authentic checks display the following statement printed below the top border: "THIS DOCUMENT HAS AN ARTIFICIAL WATERMARK PRINTED ON THE BACK. THE FRONT OF THE DOCUMENT HAS A MICROPRINT SIGNATURE LINE. ABSENCE OF THESE FEATURES WILL INDICATE A COPY." Authentic checks also display the words "PAY TO THE ORDER OF" on the left side, and an authorized signature line in the lower-right corner. The routing number appears above the bottom border.

A copy of a counterfeit item and a copy of an authentic check (VOID) are attached for your review.

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

James Hinton, Jr.
CRA & Risk Management Officer
Gateway Bank & Trust Company
12 Corporate Drive
Elizabeth City, North Carolina 27909
Telephone: (252) 331-4009, ext. 8053
Fax: (252) 334-1651

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 05/04/2006 communications@fdic.gov