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Alert 2009-8
Description: Vinton County National Bank

Counterfeit Official Checks of Vinton County National Bank, McArthur, Ohio

To: Chief Executive Officers of All National Banks; All State Banking Authorities; Chairman, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System; Chairman, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation; Director, Office of Thrift Supervision; Conference of State Bank Supervisors; Deputy Comptrollers (districts); Assistant Deputy Comptrollers; District Counsel; and All Examining Personnel

The above-named bank has reported that counterfeit official checks issued in the bank's name and using a correct routing number of 044210403 are being presented for payment nationwide in connection with a "Customer Compensation and Appreciation Bonanza" lottery scam.

The counterfeit checks resemble the bank's authentic items, but may be identified by the following traits: the instruments are of unknown color and include the following security statement in the top border of the instrument: "FOR SECURITY PURPOSES, THE FACE OF THIS DOCUMENT CONTAINS A COLORED BACKGROUND AND MICROPRINTING IN THE BORDER." In addition, the following security statement is centered between two padlock icons along the bottom border of the instrument: "SECURITY FEATURES INCLUDED. DETAILS ON BACK."

Items presented to date have been made payable in various amounts between $2,950 and $30,250, include a "Remitter" name of Global Trust, Inc., and contain a lower case "v" in the phrase "a division of Vinton County National Bank" located in the top center portion of the item.

Due to possible variations between the appearance of the bank's authentic items and the counterfeit items associated with differing scams, officials of Vinton County National Bank suggest they be contacted to verify authenticity of the bank's official checks if received by an unknown individual or entity.

Correspondence accompanying the counterfeit checks may contain the letterhead of "Global Trust, Inc., 10940 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90024, Phone: 1-213-221-3538, Fax: 1-206-666-1814," and may be signed by Mr. Oliver G. Jenkins, Credit Control Department. The correspondence informs the recipient that he or she has been selected as a winner in the "Customer Compensation and Appreciation Bonanza" lottery draw. The letter states that the enclosed check is to be used to pay processing fees. Recipients are instructed to contact Claims Agent John Thomas at 1-213-221-3538 or via e-mail at [tomjay49@yahoo.com].

For additional information and guidance, and to verify the authenticity of Vinton County National Bank's checks, please contact Marilyn Braden, Compliance Department at (740) 596-2525 or via fax at (740) 596-3534.

Consumers who receive a counterfeit or fictitious item and associated material should file complaints with the following agencies, as appropriate:

  • Federal Trade Commission (FTC): by telephone at 1-877-FTC-HELP or, for filing a complaint electronically, via the FTC's Web site at www.ftc.gov.

  • Royal Canadian Mounted Police (Canadian scams): by telephone at 1-888-495-8501 or via e-mail at [info@phonebusters.com]. Their Web site, www.phonebusters.com, provides additional contact numbers.

  • Better Business Bureau (BBB) – The BBB system serves markets throughout Canada, Puerto Rico, and the United States, and is the marketplace leader in advancing trust between businesses and consumers. The international Web site www.bbb.org offers contact information for local BBBs, objective reports on more than two million businesses, consumer scam alerts, and tips on a wide variety of topics that help consumers find trustworthy businesses and make wise purchasing decisions.

  • Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) Internet Fraud Complaint Center (scams that may have originated via the Internet) at www.ic3.gov.

  • If correspondence is received via the U.S. Postal Service, contact the U.S. Postal Inspector Service by telephone at 1-888-877-7644, by mail at U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Office of Inspector General, Operations Support Group, 222 S. Riverside Plaza, Suite 1250, Chicago, IL 60606-6100, or via e-mail at http://postalinspectors.uspis.gov/forms/MailFraudComplaint.aspx.

Additional information concerning this matter that you believe should be brought to the attention of the OCC may be forwarded to:

E-mail: occalertresponses@occ.treas.gov
Mail: Office of the Comptroller of the Currency
Special Supervision Division, MS 6-4
250 E Street, SW, Washington, DC 20219
Fax: (202) 874-5214
Internet: http://www.occ.gov

For additional information regarding other types of financial fraud, please visit the OCC's anti-fraud resource at: http://www.occ.gov/topics/consumer-protection/fraud-resources/index-fraud-resources.html.

/signed/

Richard C. Stearns
Director for Enforcement & Compliance

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