Check fraud Refers to a category of criminal acts That Involve making the unlawful use of checks in order to borrow funds or Illegally ACQUIRE That do not exist dans le account balance or account-holder’s legal ownership. Most methods Involve Taking advantage of the float (the time between the negotiation of the check and Its clearance at the check-writer’s bank) to draw out funds thesis. Specific kinds of check fraud include check kiting , Where funds are Deposited before the end of the float period to cover the fraud, and paper hanging , Where the float offers the opportunity to write fraudulent checks goal the account is never replenished.

Types of check fraud

Check kiting

Main article: Check kiting

Check kiting Refers to use of the float to take advantage and delay the notice of non-existent funds.


While some checkers are fully intend to bring their accounts into good standing, others, often known as paper hangers , have pure fraud in mind, attempting to take the money and run.

Bad check writing

Main article: Non-sufficient funds

A check shall be made in writing to the merchant or other recipient, and shall not be suspected. The buyer will then take possession of the cash, goods, or services purchased with the check, and will not take action or will do so in vain.


The paper hanger is one of the most important works in the world. When the bank considers the funds available (usually on the next business day), The offender knows the cheque will bounce, and the resulting account will be in debt, but the offender will abandon the account and take the cash.

Such crimes are often used by petty criminals to obtain funds through a quick embezzlement , and are frequently conducted using a fictitious or stolen identity in order to hide that of the real offender.

This form of fraud is the basis for the Nigerian cheque scam and other similar schemes; However, the victim will be the one accused of committing such crimes, and will be left to prove his / her innocence.


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Sometimes, forgery is the method of choice in defrauding a bank. One form of forgery in which the victim’s legitimate checks, which have been either altogether stolen and then cashed, or altering to the perpetrator, by adding words and / or digits in order to inflate the amount Raising a check).

Other cases involved with the fake checks, as in the case of Frank Abagnale . The perpetrator passes or attempts to pass a check that has been manufactured by him / herself, but that represents a non-existent account.

Unusual cases

(1). (2). (2). (2). (1). (2). (2). ( 2) The inspector may, by order of the inspector, [1] The perpetrator then fills in the blanks to his or her advantage.

Some of the bankruptcy cases of Suzette A. Brock, who was convicted of the bankruptcy of her bankruptcy, Walla Walla, WA. [2]

The most notorious “bad check of the artist” of the 20th century, Frank Abagnale , has been scheduled to incorrect MICR numbers at the bottom of the check he wrote, so that they would be routed to the incorrect Federal Reserve Bank for clearing. This allowed him to work in his area. [3] [4]

Combating check fraud

In MOST jurisdictions, passing a check for an amount of money the writer knows is not in the account at the time of negotiation (or available for overdraft protection ) is usually regarded a violation of criminal law . However, the general practice followed by banks has been made to refrain from prosecuting the writers’ checks. The penalty is payable by the court in the event of a bankruptcy.

Only when the successful clearance of a check is due to a kiting scheme does the bank traditionally take action. Banks have always had various methods of detecting kiting schemes and stopping them in the act. The ATMs for deposits of ATMs for deposits, including the ATMs for deposits.

New technology in place today can make most forms of checks kiting and paper hanging a thing of the past. As new software rapidly catches illegal activities at the teller / branch level instead of waiting for the nightly runs to the back office, schemes are not only easier to detect, but may be prevented by tellers who deny customers illegal transactions before they are even started.

Part of how banks are combating fraud with their clients fraud protection services. Because it is impossible for banks to know what checks they have and what they may be fraudulent, the onus is on the customers to make the bank know what checks they write. These systems allow customers to upload their checks to the bank, the amount of money, and in some cases, the payee name. Now, when a check is made for payment, the bank scrubs against the information on file. If one of the variables does not match, then the check would be flagged as a potentially fraudulent item.

These services help with external fraud but they do not have internal fraud. If an employee sends information to the bank with fraudulent items, then the bank would not know to deny payment. A system of dual controls should be put into place in order to allocate all capabilities to one person.

Before the passage of the Check Clearing for the 21st Century Act , [5] when checks could take 3 or more days to clear, playing the float was fairly common in the USA. [6]

Circular and abandonment fraud are being gradually be eliminated as checks will clear in Bank B the same day they are deposited into Bank A, giving no time at all for non-existent funds to become available for withdrawal. With image-sharing technology, the funds that temporarily become available in Bank A’s account are wiped out the same day.

If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us. Increasingly, more chains are limiting the amount of cash back received, the number of times cash back can be offert en a week gold Given period of time, and Obtaining transactional account balances before Offering cash back, thereby Denying it To Those with low balances . For example, Walmart ‘s policy is to determine account balances Of Those Obtaining cash back, and Some Safeway locations will not offer cash back On Any accounts with balances under $ 250, Even When Sufficient funds are to cover the amount on the check. Customers who are noted to get cash back frequently are also investigated by the corporation to observe patterns.

Some businesses will also use the cheque strictly as an informational device to automatically debit funds from the account, and will return the item to the customer thereafter. However, in the United States, the Automated Clearing House (ACH); But the ACH is not instantaneous. Though this practice reduces the room for kiting (by reducing float), it does not always eliminate it.

See also

  • Advance-fee scam
  • Bad check restitution program
  • Bank fraud
  • ChexSystems
  • Federal Bureau of Investigation
  • House banking scandal
  • Job kiting , named by analogy
  • Qchex
  • United States Secret Service
  • White-collar crime


  1. Jump up^ Charles Bruce. “Check Washing – WHAT IS IT?” . . Retrieved 2012-09-02 .
  2. Jump up^ . Retrieved December 17, 2008 . Missing or empty( help ) [ dead link ]|title=
  3. Jump up^ Abagnale Jr., Frank (1980). Catch Me If You Can: The True Story of a Real Fake . New York: Grosset & Dunlap. ISBN  0-448-16538-4 .
  4. Jump up^ Leonardo DiCaprio, Steven Spielberg (director) (2002). Catch Me If You Can (motion picture). USA: DreamWorks.
  5. Jump up^ “Check Services” . Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System . Retrieved 16 January 2013 .
  6. Jump up^ “Less for Your Travel Checks” (PDF) . The Ledger . Winter 2004-2005.