By Mike DeNardo
TRENTON, N.J. (CBS) – Authorities are warning of a scam involving a fake check that looks like it is coming from the New Jersey state treasury.
Only one of the fake New Jersey Treasury checks has been discovered so far, mailed to someone in Ohio.
Eric Kanefsky, Acting Director of the State Division of Consumer Affairs, says it’s likely there are more.
“The fake check, for all intents and purposes, looks a lot like one that you would receive from the Department of Treasury. There are certain deficiencies in it. It’s not a dead-on replica of one, but it’s close enough that it would fool most people.”
The recipient is asked to be a “mystery shopper” and test Western Union services by depositing the $3800 check, keeping $200, and wiring the remaining $3600 to two locations. The scam is that the check is fake and the recipient is out the $3600.
Kanefsky says it was just last month that con-artists sent out a document purporting to be from the New Jersey Attorney General, inviting recipients to apply for a share of a fake legal settlement.
Kanefsky says if someone is offering you free money, you should be skeptical. He recommends contacting a government agency directly to verify that any such offer is legit.