March 12 - Fictitious correspondence, allegedly issued by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency regarding funds purportedly under the control of the OCC and other government entities, is in circulation. Correspondence may be distributed via email, fax or postal mail.
Any document claiming that the OCC is involved in holding any funds for the benefit of any individual or entity is fraudulent. The OCC does not participate in the transfer of funds for, or on behalf of, individuals, business enterprises or governmental entities.
The correspondence may indicate that funds are being held as a requirement for an issuance of a Money Laundering Clearance Certificate in reference to a release of funds and that the beneficiary is required to pay a mandatory processing/issuance fee to have the funds released. The recipient is also instructed to submit a copy of his/her passport for identification purposes.
Click here for a copy of this fraudulent correspondence, which is being sent to consumers in an attempt to elicit funds from them and to gather personal information to be used in possible future identification theft.
The correspondence in question may contain forged signatures of former or current OCC officials. In addition, the material contains an email address and telephone number that are not associated with the OCC.
Before responding in any manner to any proposal supposedly issued by the OCC that requests personal information or personal account information or that requires the payment of any fee in connection with the proposal, the recipient should take steps to verify that the proposal is legitimate. At a minimum, the OCC recommends that consumers:
Any information regarding the subject of this or any other alert that you wish to bring to the attention of the OCC may be sent to occalertresponses(at)occ.treas.gov.