OCC warns counterfeit cashier’s checks using NJ bank’s routing number are circulating

The First National Bank of Elmer (Elmer, N.J.) has reported that counterfeit cashier’s checks using the bank’s routing number of 031203915 are being presented for payment nationwide in connection with an online job opportunity overpayment scam, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) said in an alert Wednesday.

The alert says the counterfeit checks resemble the bank’s authentic items but may be identified by the following traits:

  • The checks are blue with white marbling and contain a dark top border with the following security statement: “THIS DOCUMENT HAS A COLORED BACKGROUND AND MICROPRINTING. THE REVERSE SIDE INCLUDES AN ARTIFICIAL WATERMARK.”
  • The bank’s address appears as “PO BOX Elmer NJ 08318.” The actual box number is missing.
  • The words “CASHIERS CHECK” appear in the top center portion of the check but are not encircled.
  • The ABA number is located beneath and to the left of the check number.
  • The written dollar amount line contains empty space after the amount.
  • The numerical dollar amount is not underlined.
  • The account number in the micro line at the bottom of the check is preceded by four zeros.

Checks presented to date have been made payable in amounts ranging from $1,300 to $100,000 and contain a remitter name of Robert White.

The OCC says that in this particular scam, potential victims have been contacted via email by David Netto using an email address of [Davidnetto101@protonmail.com]. The email correspondence introduces Netto as a writer for a well-known magazine, who is advertising for a professional photographer. Counterfeit checks sent to potential victims are made payable for an amount greater than the agreed-upon amount; the recipients are instructed to deposit the counterfeit check and immediately wire the overage amount to a third party.

Counterfeit Cashier’s Checks of the First National Bank of Elmer, Elmer, NJ