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Alert 2007-17
Description: Great Lakes Bank, N.A.

Counterfeit Official Checks of Great Lakes Bank, N.A., Blue Island, IL

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 022000868 are being presented for payment nationwide in connection with a lottery scam.

While the counterfeit items have a strong resemblance to the authentic items, the counterfeit checks may be identified by the following: the instruments are green in color and contain the bank's name and logo in a blue and green two-tone color. A security strip within the top border states: "THE CHECK IS VOID WITHOUT A COLORED BORDER AND BACKGROUND PLUS A KNIGHT & FINGERPRINT WATERMARK ON THE BACK – HOLD AT ANGLE TO VIEW."

Items presented to date have been made payable in the amount of $5,000 and contain a remitter name of Jim Powers. Due to possible variations of appearance and/or scam, it is suggested that Great Lakes Bank, N.A. officials be contacted to verify authenticity of the bank's official items if received from an unknown or questionable source.

Correspondence accompanying the checks may contain the letterhead of "Mega Millions, PO Box 99902, Las Vegas, NV 89197-8902, 1-877-878-9392, 1-866-859-6706, 1-778-386-3680." The letter alerts the recipient that he or she is the winner of a lucky drawing and should contact Account Manager Jim Powers or Patricia Banker at 1-877-878-9392 or 1-778-386-3680 (Canadian telephone number). The recipient is advised to keep all information confidential and is encouraged to act by a specific date or the winnings will be forfeited. The letter further states that the enclosed check is to be used to pay legal and administration fees between $2,000 to $6,880, which should be wire-transferred using Money Gram or Western Union. The correspondence may be signed by K. Jamison, Financial Manager.

For additional information and guidance and to verify the authenticity of Great Lakes Bank, N.A.'s official checks, please contact Judith L. Boyer, AVP/Security Officer, Great Lakes Bank, N.A., 13057 S. Western Avenue, Blue Island, IL 60406, by telephone at (708) 283-5821, by fax at (708) 503-5445, or via e-mail at [boyerj@bankofchoice.com].

Consumers who receive a counterfeit item and associated material should file complaints with the following agencies:

  • Federal Trade Commission (FTC): by telephone at 1-877-FTC-HELP or, for filing a complaint electronically, via the FTC’s Internet 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 – 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.  

  • 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