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The Check Doesn’t Pass And Neither Does The Teller

, , , , | Right | September 1, 2021

I work in the collections department of our credit union, which involves check returns and fraudulent checks. I am probably the most knowledgeable person in the building when it comes to check fraud. Most of the time, if our members are attempting to deposit a fraudulent check, they are sent to my office first so that we can sit down and I can explain why it’s fraud. If they successfully deposit the check and take the loss, it can be much worse for them. This happens as I am briefly filling in for our front desk greeter.

Me: “Hi, how can I help you?”

Member: “I want to deposit this check, but before I do, I want to see if it’s a scam.”

Me: “Oh, well, I’m the person for that. May I see the check?”

Member: “No offense, but I want someone older, not your young self.”

Me: “Well, ma’am, I am thirty-eight years old, I’ve worked in finance seventeen years, and I fraudulent checks are specifically my job. I’m just briefly sitting at this desk so our greeter can have her lunch break.”

Member: “Fine. Look at the check.”

She gives me the most obvious scam there is. Every red flag is there: work from home, send someone an Amazon gift card, check looks fake, the “sender” is a casino in Texas (we don’t have casinos), etc.

Me: “Okay, yes, this is definitely a scam.”

Member: “Hmm, I don’t think so. I want someone older.”

Me: “Ma’am, I can assure you, if you’ll let me point out the reasons why—”

The member suddenly LOSES IT and starts screaming.

Member: “No! I want someone older. Not you! Not you! You are annoying!”

I send the member to our teller manager who, being in her fifties, apparently passes the “older than me” test.

Teller Manager: “Hmm… Well, ma’am, this check looks to be fraudulent. I will not be able to cash it. However, if you go to the desk and see that lady right there—” *points to me* “—she is our resident expert. She can review it for you.”

Member: “YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME!”