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Federal Reserve Accounts

  • Overview

    Overview

    The Federal Reserve provides banking services only to banks. Individuals do not have accounts at the Federal Reserve.

    Scammers might purport that the intended victim has an account at the Federal Reserve that contains money. In such schemes, the perpetrator might try to persuade victims to pay fees to have purported accounts activated, or the scammer might persuade consumers to use a Federal Reserve routing number (sometimes in combination with their Social Security numbers) to pay bills. Consumers should be aware that such checks or check payments utilizing a Federal Reserve routing number are worthless and will be returned. In addition, consumers who have attempted to use the Fed’s routing numbers to pay their bills may be subject to penalty fees from the company they were attempting to pay.

  • Who to Contact

    Who to Contact

    If you have suffered a loss as a result of an advance fee fraud (419), you can report this loss to the United States Secret Service by contacting your local field office.You can also file a complaint with the Internet Complaint Center (IC3), which is a partnership between the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C), and the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA). For additional information on how to safely conduct transactions over the internet, you may want to visit FakeChecks.org.

  • Tips for Preventing

    Tips for Preventing

    • If it appears to be too good to be true, it probably is.
    • Don't respond to any offer unless its legitimacy is thoroughly investigated through independent sources.
    • Don't pay anything up front.
    • Don't provide personal and/or banking information to someone unknown to you.
    • Always ensure that checks have cleared before utilizing funds. Your bank will hold you personally responsible for any returned items that are deposited into your banking account.
    • Always be suspicious when offers require the highest level of secrecy.

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