Check fraud continues to be one of the largest frauds and in particular counterfeit and altered checks due to the increased accessibility of sophisticated desktop software. One scam involving counterfeit checks that remains popular is “Sellers Beware”.
place an ad in the local newspaper or via the Internet to sell a car,
jewelry, motorcycle, etc. An interested buyer contacts you to purchase
these items and a price is agreed upon. You are given a check that may
say "Cashier's Check" or "Official Check," however,when this check is
presented to your financial institution for negotiation, you are
informed the check is counterfeit.
In a similar scam the purchaser will send the seller a
"Cashier's Check" or "Official Check" for more than the agreed upon
purchase price. The purchaser will then request the overpayment be sent
back via wire transfer. After the wire transfer is sent, the check is
returned as counterfeit. By that time, you are out the merchandise and
the additional money.
Don't be left empty handed. Remember, before turning over
any merchandise to a purchaser make sure the check you have received is
a valid item by verifying the check with the bank the check is drawn on.