The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) is partnering with the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) – Division of Banking and Division of Financial Institutions to work with financial institutions in detecting and combating unemployment fraud.
Unemployment fraud can often be identified early on at the financial institutional level. Coordinating and engaging financial institutions has been a proven and successful approach to identifying fraudulent actors, and detecting and recovering improper payments.
Financial institutions should be on the lookout for the following suspicious activities to assist IDES in preventing unemployment fraud:
- New account with sudden multiple deposit transactions from state unemployment insurance programs.
- Name and/or data on the account does not match the name and/or data with ACH transaction(s).
- Account holder is receiving unemployment insurance transactions from a state(s) in which he/she does not reside.
- Account holder is receiving multiple unemployment insurance transactions from multiple states.
- Same device is accessing multiple accounts.
- Point of sale transactions are inconsistent with the address on the account.
Last month, IDES announced it was working with local and federal law enforcement authorities to investigate, pursue, and prosecute the widespread unemployment fraud scheme being conducted nationwide, impacting the state’s federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) programs.
If you have not filed an unemployment claim but has received a debit card or an unemployment insurance (UI) finding letter in the mail, you have most likely been the target of fraud. It is important that individuals follow these steps if they have not filed unemployment claims and have incorrectly received unemployment debit cards or UI finding letters in the mail:
- Immediately report the claim online or call IDES at 800.814.0513 and when prompted:
- Select the English or Spanish language option.
- Select option 1 for claimants.
- Select option 5 to report identity theft.
- Do not activate the debit card that was mailed to you.
- Have your credit report checked for possible suspicious activity and post a fraud alert.
- Visit the Federal Trade Commission’s website to learn helpful tips on recognizing and reporting identity theft.