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Special Alerts

SA-175-2009
October 1, 2009


TO: CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER (also of interest to Security Officer)
SUBJECT: Counterfeit Official Checks
Summary: Counterfeit official checks bearing the name Central Bank, Russellville, Indiana, are reportedly in circulation.

Central Bank, Houston, Texas, 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 092005411, which is assigned to First Interstate Bank, Billings, Montana. Central Bank issues official checks through Moneygram Payment Systems Incorporated, Minneapolis, Minnesota, payable through First Interstate Bank. The counterfeit items have ornate top and side borders. A security feature statement is displayed along the top border on either side of the words "OFFICIAL CHECK." The bank's name, logo and a location not associated with the bank appear in the top-left corner. The word "Date" is displayed slightly off center. A security feature statement and a padlock icon appear next to the right border. The statement "TWO SIGNATURES REQUIRED OVER $25,000" appears in the lower-right corner under the signature lines.

Authentic checks are light blue with darkened borders. A security feature statement is displayed under the top border. A box for the check amount appears under the words "OFFICIAL CHECK" in the top-right corner. The word "Remitter" is displayed under the bank's logo and name in the top-left corner. A heat-reactive thermochromic icon is top-centered. The statement "TWO SIGNATURES REQUIRED OVER $125,000.00" appears in the lower-right corner under the signature lines.

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:

Margarite Gonzales
Vice President
Central Bank
P.O. Box 801263
Houston, Texas 77280-9911
Telephone: (832) 485-2300
Fax: (832) 485-2422
Email: margarite@centralbankhouston.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/2009/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 10/1/2009 communications@fdic.gov