Check Fraud


More than 1.2 million worthless checks enter the banking system each day. The Nilson Report advises that annual check fraud losses now exceed $20 million and is growing at a pace of 25% per year.

There are several ways to combat check fraud:

  • High security checks - these checks contain at least eight (8) safety features. To see high security  
    checks, visit
  • Reconcile bank statements promptly.
  • Report forged checks as soon as they are discovered. 
    Most banks have timeframe limits in which to report.
  • Do not give out bank routing numbers or account numbers to anyone requesting such information.

The bank would never call you and request such information.

Counterfeiters & New Technology

Here are some techniques used to counterfeit or alter checks

  • PC's and Scanners - any information on the check can be altered and appear genuine.
  • Color Copiers - can reproduce a color document that can not be distinguished from the original.  
    Paper currency is copied as well.
  • Desktop Publishing Software - can create actual checks. Printers now have MICR ink and fonts which 
    will allow the check to clear without detection.
  • Chemical Altering (washing) - ink can be dissolved alowing the check to be rewritten. Some chemicals 
    will even destroy the actual paper check over a few days time, thus destroying all evidence of the fraud.
  • Mail Order - criminals get account information by standing in line behind you. They memorize the bank 
    name and your account number and order actual checks.

Use your debit cards.

  • Laser Printers - also used to create high quality authentic looking checks. 
    These printers also have MICR ink.