Business Account Mail Deposit Fraud
Please be advised that unknown individuals have been attempting to clear fraudulent checks on business accounts using the bank by mail platform. By sending the check directly to the bank, the business client is unaware of the fraudulent deposit.
How the scam works:
- The fraud starts with the business account being compromised, (intercepting mailed statements/checks, computer viruses, spam, etc).
- The fraudster will mail a large check to the bank’s operational headquarters to credit the targeted business account with the business name appearing as payee on the check.
- The bank accepts the check as a deposit to the business account, and processes the transaction.
- Next, the fraudster creates a counterfeit check drawn off of the business account and issues the item to different business at another financial institution. (By sending the deposit and creating a check for the same amount payable to a different business makes the transactions appear legitimate).
- The next day, the counterfeit check will come through the bank’s exchange area to be paid. By paying the check, the fraudster would be successful with the scam.
Tips to avoid a scam:
- Store your checks, deposit slips, bank statements and canceled checks in a secure and locked location. Never leave your checkbook in your vehicle or out in the open.
- Reconcile your account promptly and regularly -- quick fraud detection increases the likelihood of recovery.
- Never give your account number to people you do not know, especially over the telephone. Be particularly aware of unsolicited phone sales.
- Unless needed for tax purpose, destroy old canceled checks, account statements, deposit tickets, ATM receipts (they also frequently have your account number and worse yet, your account balance). The personal information on it may help someone impersonate you and take money from your account.
- When you receive your check order, make sure all of the checks are there, and that none are missing. Report missing checks to your bank at once. Should you fail to receive your order by mail, alert your bank. Checks could have been stolen from mail box or lost in transient.
- Make sure you notify your check supplier (and financial institution, if necessary) if a new check order has not been received within a reasonable amount of time after you ordered them.