Letter Warns of Wal-Mart Employee Fraud-Fiction!
Summary of the eRumor: This eRumor is in the form of
a scan of a letter from the Department of Public Safety and Corrections,
Office of Motor Vehicles in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. It warns that
Wal-Mart employees are using their camera phones to take a picture of
customer's checks then using that to print a version that is run through
your account for either cash or to purchase gift cards. The letter
says this is a "multi-city fraud and theft ring"
The Truth: On July 31, 2007 Sgt. Markus
L. Smith of the Louisiana State Police issued a statement saying that
this letter was unauthorized and sent to employees of the Baton Rouge
field office of the Louisiana Department of Public Safety and
Corrections, Office of Motor Vehicles.
Sgt. Smith said that the letter was not official or sanctioned in any
way by the department and that members of the public should not rely on
the information in the letter.
Sgt. Smith's statement apologizes to Wal-Mart or anyone else who may
have been inconvenienced.
We have not found any widespread evidence of this employee fraud and
whoever wrote this letter may have been influenced by another eRumor.
The letter claims that employees are using camera phones to take
pictures of checks then downloading the images to make fraudulent checks
that can be drawn from your account. This is similar to an eRumor
that circulated in 2004 that claimed that camera phones were being used
to capture pictures credit cards being used by people at check
HERE FOR THAT STORY.
The problem is that as of this writing none of the camera phones is of
good enough quality to actually take a picture that could then be
converted into a fake check.
Also, we have not found any evidence of this particular scheme except in
forwarded emails. If there is any law enforcement agency investigating
it other than as a potential for theft, we're not aware of it.
A real example of the eRumor as it has
appeared on the Internet: