Dane Co. check fraud scheme tops $300,000 in losses, Sheriff’s Office estimates

The Dane Co. Sheriff's Office is warning about a check theft scheme that is blamed for hundreds...
The Dane Co. Sheriff's Office is warning about a check theft scheme that is blamed for hundreds of thousands of dollars in losses.(payphoto | Getty Images/iStockphoto)
Published: Feb. 7, 2023 at 12:06 PM CST
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) – Hundreds of thousands of dollars-worth of payroll checks were likely copied and cashed as part of a scheme currently targeting Dane Co., the Sheriff’s Office warned Tuesday morning.

The Sheriff’s Office alerted the public to the rash of check thefts, estimating the losses in excess of $300,000. Its investigators believe the perpetrators come from out of state, but they did not add any more information as to who may be behind the thefts.

The statement did not identify any of the businesses affected by the thefts.

Anyone who has been the victim of theft or fraud is asked to call the Dane Co. Communications Center at 608-255-2345.

In its statement, the Sheriff’s Office included multiple tips for individuals to protect themselves from such incidents, explaining education is the best defense against fraud:

  • For businesses, establish a secure paycheck distribution system like direct deposit.
  • When mailing checks, place them in a secure mailbox at the post office or other secure location.
  • Inquire if your financial institution offers security features like “Positive Pay” or security markings on checks.
  • When mail arrives, collect it as soon as possible.
  • Areas like Industrial Parks have been targeted due to a large number of businesses in a concentrated area.

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