The warning from Police Scotland’s Tayside Division follows several recent incidents across the Angus and Dundee of people targeting small independent retailers requesting to pay for expensive goods by cheque.
These are later rejected by the bank while being processed.
The force has now issued guidance to help business owners to protect their businesses.
It is also urging anyone who thinks they may have fallen victim to the fraud to get in touch.
A spokesperson said: “We are currently following positive lines of enquiry, however, in the meantime, if you own or are employed in a similar premises, it would be prudent not to accept payment by cheque unless the person presenting same is known by you as a regular and trusted customer.
“If you believe your premises has been targeted by this recently, please report this to us by calling 101.”
Any business wishing to receive crime prevention advice about this, or any other crime, please contact can contact the division’s Preventions Department by calling 101 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Businesses can also join Neighbourhood Watch Scotland Alert Scheme for up to date crime prevention advice, and emerging crime trends in their area at www.neighbourhoodwatchscotland.co.uk