What security features do paper checks have?

Call me inquisitive or just really bored but one day, as I was scanning my mail that took about an hour, I decided to scan my check I had received from one of my editors. I didn’t want to be like the normal people of planet earth so instead of scanning the front of the check that held the sweet dollar sign I scanned the back of the check. My scanner was able to pick up the following text.

It’s amazing, by the way, how much security can go onto a single piece of paper.

DO NOT WRITE, STAMP OR SIGN BELOW THIS LINE

RESERVED FOR FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONAL USE*

RESERVE BOARD OF GOVERNORS REG. CC

Listed below are the security features provided on this document which meets and/or exceeds industry guidelines.

Security Features:

Security Watermark

Microprinting

Chemical Sensitization

Invisible Fluorescent Fibers Toner Retention Treatment

Advisory Icon

Description / Fraud Indicator;

Reflective, white opaque ink readable when held at an angle, viewed under UV light, or rubbed with coin.

Reduced lines of type on front sides of check appear as a solid line until viewed under magnification.

Colored stain(s) on either or both sides of check indicate possible chemical alteration.

Invisible fibers on surface of check become visible under UV light Ink is bonded to surface of check. Surface disturbance indicates possible alteration.

Icon located on face of check that alerts handler that the document contains security features.

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Published by:

Robert W Kingett

Robert Kingett is a gay blind journalist, and author, with many publications in magazines, anthologies, and blogs. He has judged many writing contests and has won many awards for his writings and advocacy.

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