Mobile Menu Locations Contact

The Latest from Columbia

Counterfeit Money Orders on the Rise

by User Not Found | Mar 30, 2015

by Jon Stockton


A recent uptick in counterfeit money orders means that those business owners who accept money orders will want to be on the alert. Protect your business and your bottom line by taking a moment to educate yourself about the features of phony money orders:

Red Flags | Detecting Counterfeit Money Orders

  • It is wise to familiarize yourself with the basic printing features of an authentic US Postal Money Order, as one of the most obvious red flags that you have been provided with a phony money order is font and printing that differ from the norm.
  • Authentic money orders contain a hologram. Counterfeit money orders do not.
  • Authentic US Postal Money Orders feature an imprinted watermark of Benjamin Franklin. Counterfeit money orders may contain an image of Franklin, but not an imprint.
  • The edge of the money order may be jagged, uneven or unprofessionally prepared. If it looks like it has been through the ringer, it probably has!
  • The sender’s address is out-of-state or out-of-country—this is a potential red flag if it doesn’t make sense with your business or the interactions you have had with the customer.

Legitimate Postal Money Order

Sample Counterfeit Money Order

To verify a postal money order, call the money order Verification System at 1-866-459-7822. If you suspect fraud, you can always contact the fraud investigators in Loss Prevention at Columbia Bank, who will provide guidance.


connect nearby or online

Click to Share Your Location

We'll find a branch near you. You can also visit the locations page or contact us.

Enter a zip code to find the
nearest branch

Connect with CB

Consider This

May we interest you in...