CHICAGO (CBS) — A lot of people are checking unclaimed property sites to see if there’s an old paycheck, jewelry or other forgotten wealth awaiting them, but the Illinois state treasurer’s office is warning that some sites might not be legitimate.

The only such program that the state of Illinois recognizes, and works with, is the I-Cash program run by the treasurer’s office.

Treasurer Dan Rutherford said I-Cash never charges fees to those who use it, or find something on it, and does not give or impose commissions.

He stops short of calling those property finders who charge fees and commissions scam artists, but said there is no need for anyone to pay a fee.

Anyone can check the I-Cash website for free, and Rutherford said that last year alone, the I-Cash program returned $129 million in unclaimed property to the rightful owners, or their heirs — a 37 percent increase from 2011.

The I-Cash program still holds an estimated $1.7 billion in unclaimed wealth.

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