Checking Out Checks. Are they History or Here to Stay?
Written by LizAdmin on February 28, 2018
The truth is, over the years, check usage has decreased. This trend isn’t due to security concerns, but rather the movement toward digital that’s impacted just about every industry.
The first big evolution happened in 2004 with regulation changes that gave banks the freedom to not retain original checks, but rather digital copies only. This led to more businesses moving to direct deposit and, more recently, ATMs have transitioned to check deposit without an envelope or teller present.
That doesn’t mean you need to shred your checks and say goodbye to the boxes of checks stored away in your closet or desk drawer. While we see a shift toward digital, checks are still very much present in transactions, and because of the advances in digital technology, are safer than ever.
It’s fairly common to find you’re writing fewer and fewer checks. With automatic debits, debit cards and online banking, digital banking has increasingly become the norm. But checks remain an everyday transaction tool—so if you’re comfortable using checks, you don’t need to quit. In fact, the evolution to digital banking means those checks you’re writing are more secure than ever.
Why? Because viewing digital images of checks requires your password or thumbprint. Likewise, depositing checks through an ATM is a safe and a quick way to get access to your funds.
When all is said and done, the best safety net for your transactions is you. And the best way for you to manage, control and track activity, whether it includes checks or not, is digitally.
As we continually work to increase the safety and security of your transactions, we encourage you to follow these guidelines to ensure you are reducing any potential risks:
- Store your blank checks and statements in a secure place, such as a locked safe.
- Keep track of checks you’ve ordered. If they don’t show up in a reasonable amount of time, let us know so we can track or cancel the order.
- Report missing checks immediately so we can take appropriate actions.
- Shred unneeded or old checks and bank statements.
- Always conceal checks from sight when sending through the mail.
- Consider using a PO Box for your mail if you’re worried about mail fraud and delivery of checks.
- Use online banking tools to monitor your account at least every other day.
It’s OK to continue writing and using checks, but just like any other banking transaction, it’s also good to take precautions. Our online banking is completely secure and smart. We’ve got you covered.
Farmers & Merchants Bank – Smart Bank. Smart You.