Few of us give much thought to the information we make public every time we write a personal check. In this day and age of rampant identity theft, there are some things you should consider checking when it comes to your personal banking checks, such as:
- The next time you order new checks, instead of having your full name put on them, have just your first and middle initials and your last name put on them. If someone takes your checkbook, they will not know how you sign your checks — but your bank will know how you sign them.
- If your bank requires that a phone number appear on your checks, always use your work phone number, not your home number.
- If you have a P.O. Box number and a street address, only put the P.O. Box number on your checks. If you don’t have a P.O. Box, use your work address.
- NEVER have your Social Security number printed on your checks. If it’s absolutely necessary that it appear on some checks, you can write it in yourself. If you have it printed, anyone can get it.
Most of us assume that the people who see our personal checks are honest and trustworthy. And, 99% of them are. But, by exercising a little caution, you can keep the remaining 1% from using your personal bank checks to gain access to your assets.