Simply walking into the bank and asking "Is this check good?” shows intent to cash. That is a point that gets people really confused when they get in trouble. They say, “Well, I did not want to cash it, I just wanted to know if it was good or not.” The law can be interpreted such that if the clerk said it was good the person would cash it, so asking the question in the first place shows intent.
It is a good rule of thumb is that if a check suddenly appears in your mailbox or arrives by courier, it is a counterfeit. Simply stated, unexpected money (in the form of checks or money orders) with little reasoning behind why it was sent is an indicator that the items are counterfeit.
If You Have Been A Victim of Internet Fraud:
- The report should be filed in the jurisdiction where the money was received (the suspect’s location). You will need to know dates, addresses, and amounts involved. They will give you a case number at the time you file the report. If the Suspect resides in Kansas City, MO, or the money or product was sent here,file a police report for forgery or fraud with the KCMO Police Department by traveling to any of our Patrol Divisions or the Records Section (during normal business hours).
- If the Suspect resides in Kansas City, MO, or the money or product was sent here,put together copies of any paperwork you may have relating to the transactions, i.e., copies of correspondence, the initial listing, etc. This should include a copy of your account statement showing that the money was paid out, especiallyof the check/money order issued/cashed for payment. We will need copies of bothsides. Recover the original from the bank or money order company if you can.
- If the Suspect resides in Kansas City, MO, or the money or product was sent here,mail copies of any documentation, along with a detailed written summary by you of the sequence of events and reference the case number on this correspondence. Send to Kansa City Police Dept, Forgery/Fraud Unit, 1125 Locust, Kansas City, MO, 64106.
- If your transaction was being conducted with a business rather than an individual, you should also notify your Missouri Attorney General’s Office and file a consumer fraud complaint.
- If you are aware of other victims, pass this information on to them and encourage them to file reports as well.
- You receive a check or money order. The sender asks you to deposit the check or money order into your account and then wire-transfer him or her the money — minus a nice bonus as a “thank you” for helping out.
Features to Look For
Not all checks contain the following features, but most contain at least one for purposes of identifying a check as geuine. Security features are continuously being updated and developed to defend against alteration, erasure, toner removal, photocopying, and counterfeiting. Choosing the right security features for your checks can save you money in the long run. Without preventive measures, you or your business become an attractive target for crime rings or individual forgery artists. A good, secure check, will have both covert and overt features.
Check 21 Image Ready - When a financial institution stores checks electronically or as microfilm it is necessary for the data to take up a small amount of storage space and be readable. Through the use of passive inks with a neutral finish, this type of check assure the smallest image size possible and reduce background clutter to make the check readable yet secure.
Simulated Watermark- Printed with white ink, simulated watermarks have a different reflectance than the base paper and can be seen at an angle. Because the ink is white, it cannot be photocopied or scanned.
Anti-Splice Backer - Diagonal lines of varying thickness which are printed on the back, making it difficult to alter information by the cut-and-paste method.
Security Feature Box - Describes some of the visible and hidden security features.
Endorsement Pantograph / Copy Void - One color pantograph
to make the endorsing signature difficult if not impossible to scan or copy. It also has a copy void feature built into the background.
Invisible Fluorescent Fibers - Fibers are revealed under a black light.
Non-Negotiable Stub Backer - "Non-Negotiable printed on the back of the check stub to prevent fraudulent use of check stock.
Copy-Void in Pantograph - A repeated background design that is exposed when scanned or copied.
Prismatic Two-Color Pantograph - A multi-color background in which two colors change density and blend into each other, making it difficult to reproduce accurately on a color copier.
Erasure Protection - When erased, color pantograph becomes white.
Overt Warning Band - Documents obvious security features for easy verification.
Border Microprinting - Words are printed so small that they appear as a line to the naked eye. Only when magnified do the microprinted words become visible, making it extremely difficult to duplicate with a copier or scanner.
Target Mark - Used to ensure that the MICR line is property aligned.
Signature Security - Signature area is secured with the words "ORIGINAL DOCUMENT." This background interferes with scanners making it difficult to reproduce.
Prevention for Check Forgery
Carry your checkbook only when necessary.
Lock up your checkbook in a safe place.
Keep your replacement checkbooks in a safe, separate location.
Do not use your house mailbox to mail checks, whenever possible. Use postal mailboxes at the US Post Office as it provides more security.
Regularly balance your checkbook. Use online banking whenever possible.
The Uniball 207 is a retractable, gel rollerball pen and was introduced by the Rubbermaid company as a fight against check washing. Check washing is a process used by thieves in they erase the ink on a check (usually with a solvent) then rewrite it to make fraudulent withdrawals. In 2006, check washing led to 800 million dollars of fraud in the US. The Uniball 207 protects against check washing because of one main reason: it uses a pigment-based ink, as opposed to a dye-based ink. This means the pen ink adheres to the surface it's writing on, whereas the other types of ink sit on top (thus making it easier to wash). If you already have a favorite rollerball pen, the 207's ink cartridge will fit in most encasings. The Uniball 207 comes in either a 0.7mm tip or 0.5mm tip.
Uni-ball® 207™ is teaming up with Frank W. Abagnale
, one of the most respected experts on identity theft and the person whose life is chronicled in the blockbuster movie "Catch Me If You Can", to help individuals protect themselves from a common form of check fraud. He advocates using certain uni-ball gel pens to protect against the escalating check washing threat, singling out the uni-ball® 207™ as his favorite in deterring the act.