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Writing a check in 2019

This is a funny but sad story of the state of current currency when paying by check.

A couple of weeks ago my checking account was hacked via my visa debit card. I am careful(obviously not enough) how I use it and what establishments I go to. Needless to say, in a very short amount of time, substantial damage was done to the account to prove a major PITA while things get straightened out.
So until everything gets resolved 100% I am not getting a new card until things get straightened out so who knows how long that will be due to the wrecking ball to the finances.

I have gone old school by writing checks for things I need. Twice now I have seemed to completely shorted out cashier lines and today, had an asshat start popping off how long its been since he has seen anyone wright a check and how I need to join modern times. I do believe he was taken back by my rather quick, pointed and direct response. He quickly backed down...... this was a Lowes.

I have also discovered that here in CA, in 2019, the UNITED STATES PASSPORT CARD Federal identification card is not an acceptable form of identification.

Oh boy.........


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Old 08-11-2019, 02:47 PM
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I know a few young people who don't have a clue what a checking account is.
Is the passport card a matter of the people not trusting it because they don't know what it is? A lot of cashier level employees might not even know what a passport is.
I have a debit card that I only use at bank ATMs. Everything else is paid by a check by mail or a credit card. Recovery from theft or hacking is WAYYY easier with a credit card.
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Last edited by wdfifteen; 08-11-2019 at 03:48 PM..
Old 08-11-2019, 03:14 PM
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I was out doing errands when my mechanic called that he was finished repairs on a piece of equipment I had dropped off. I prefer to pay him cash (he does too I'm guessing ) and didn't want to run home to get more cash than what I had on me so figured I'd run by my bank and get some. I whipped out my debit card and went through the ATM lane outside. For some reason the machine didn't disperse the cash I asked for, so I went to the drive through and asked for a withdrawal slip. When I gave them my debit card, they said it expired 3 years ago...ha ha. I never use it obviously and am not sure i will even get it renewed. I tend to use a credit card on those occasions I don't use cash or pay online directly from my bank account or Paypal.

I never understand the advantage of a debit card, I guess. Why wouldn't someone just use a credit card instead? Sure seems safer.
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Old 08-11-2019, 03:16 PM
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Part of why I only use a credit card. No big mess to clean up.
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Old 08-11-2019, 03:26 PM
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Yup, went through a debit card hack years ago, never again.

I do still write checks, just wrote one today to pay my Von Maur bill. I pay some things online and others by check, but will never to auto pay- been burned on that once too- you cant cancel it except by doing a stop payment, which costs money or closing the account, which is a pain.

Credit cards came to be to protect us against theft and fraud.
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Old 08-11-2019, 03:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwest View Post
Yup, went through a debit card hack years ago, never again....

Credit cards came to be to protect us against theft and fraud.
CCs came to be because they are cash cows for the banking industry . I haven't written a check in at least a dozen years, about the same time I cancelled the CC I had for a long time. My CU's debit fraud protection has been awesome...hugely proactive...my acct has never been actually touched. I sleep well...
Old 08-11-2019, 03:42 PM
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I searched, but couldn't find it...there was an excellent thread here with a video by (Roy?) Abernathy, the real "Catch me if you can" guy. Excellent speech about fraud. He said NEVER have a debit card. Use a credit card, avoid interest by paying it off every month. You get the fraud protection offered by the card company, plus when paying monthly in full, you add to your credit score.

But hell...what does a fraud expert with the FBI know?

I live in a small town, bank with a small independent bank. I plan ahead...when I anticipate spending, I go into the bank, walk up to a teller, hand her a check, and get cash. Never had anybody hack a $20 bill....
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Old 08-11-2019, 03:58 PM
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I use a debit card for ATM cash withdrawal, nothing else.
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Old 08-11-2019, 04:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pwd72s View Post
I searched, but couldn't find it...there was an excellent thread here with a video by (Roy?) Abernathy, the real "Catch me if you can" guy. Excellent speech about fraud. He said NEVER have a debit card. Use a credit card, avoid interest by paying it off every month. You get the fraud protection offered by the card company, plus when paying monthly in full, you add to your credit score.

But hell...what does a fraud expert with the FBI know?

I live in a small town, bank with a small independent bank. I plan ahead...when I anticipate spending, I go into the bank, walk up to a teller, hand her a check, and get cash. Never had anybody hack a $20 bill....
The Rest of the 'Catch Me if You Can' Story

FYI, put your search into quotes, that helps. I searched for "catch me if you can" with the "" and that worked.
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Old 08-11-2019, 06:36 PM
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That's why I have more than one bank acct and credit card. All my accounts have been hacked at one time or another but never all at once. If one gets hacked, I can still go about my business and take care of the damaged acct when I have time. My acct was hacked for over $5K while I was on vacation. I called my bank and let them figure it out while my family and I played at the waterpark.
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Old 08-11-2019, 07:27 PM
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Quote:
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The Rest of the 'Catch Me if You Can' Story

FYI, put your search into quotes, that helps. I searched for "catch me if you can" with the "" and that worked.
Thanks for the link...and the education. I didn't use the quotes. Man, was I miles off on the guy's name as well...
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Last edited by pwd72s; 08-11-2019 at 07:45 PM..
Old 08-11-2019, 07:40 PM
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Good news it sounds like you are on top of it. Please, skip the debit card. This cant happen with a credit card. Tons of free credit cards out there. They even pay you to use the card with cash back.
Old 08-11-2019, 07:41 PM
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Quote:
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Good news it sounds like you are on top of it. Please, skip the debit card. This cant happen with a credit card. Tons of free credit cards out there. They even pay you to use the card with cash back.
technically you pay to use it because most vendors add a 3% fee onto the cost of goods that are purchased. I like the honest vendors that tell you what the price is for cash or credit. There's no such thing as free money just like there's no such thing as Zero percent interest.
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Old 08-12-2019, 04:25 AM
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I had a Debit Card hack about 10 years ago. What a mess. Mrs. Beard has been instructed to never use a Debit Card at the grocery store, etc, since the fraud department issues are VERY different for a credit card vs. debit card.

As for paying by check...I just had a client give me a personal check for over $50K for a solar energy system. 7 business day hold on the funds...I'm not suggesting it is worth the 2% loss taking a credit card, but at least you have the money in a day. The 7 business day hold was almost 2 weeks (12 normal days), since the check was given on a Friday afternoon.
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Old 08-12-2019, 04:49 AM
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My chase debit card gets hacked on avg 3 times a year...usually always someone in China. Never had a problem other than inconvenience at the worst time when I need it....like 5am when I need gas on my way to 200 mile work related drive or I need cash for a parking garage

Chase always reimbursed me and issued a new card via overnight mail

What does annoy me is Chase no longer issues a new card at the physical bank locations
Old 08-12-2019, 05:15 AM
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The CC laws were changed in 2013, and a LOT of small businesses around here are now surcharging 3-7% for CC purchases and not taking checks. That leaves cash and debit cards. I have no problem with carrying $200 or so in cash, but have relied on the debit card for more than that. How long before I get hacked?

This is why Amazon gets more and more of my business.
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Old 08-12-2019, 05:43 AM
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Some states don't allow vendors to upcharge for using a credit card, and discounting for cash or check could be viewed as the same, which means they just add the merchant fees into everyone's prices.

I deal with a lot of folks who don't have checking accounts because they can't manage them. They have a Greenpoint or Metbank debit card that gets loaded with their SSI each month, they withdraw every penny of it on day one and then have nothing on the card until the next payday. It's a real pain in the ass to deal with them, when they really want to buy final expense insurance and the insurance carrier can't set up billing to be the same day as SSI arrives, which means it will always be NSF.
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Old 08-12-2019, 06:29 AM
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Realize when you hand someone a personal check, not only are you giving them your bank account number but also the bank's routing number. Real life examples:

My terminally ill sister, on the day of her funeral, paid someone's $300 electric bill. Then after spending her first night in the cemetery, she realized it was time to pay someone's $150 cable TV bill. Things went quiet for a while after that, until someone used her info to pay their $150 gas bill. All three transactions were done online.

The bank recovered the money in all three of the transactions. The first two only had the account numbers of the thieves. But the third transaction with the gas company, it actually had a name.

Now when your mama names you after a certain Egyptian Queen, and you are the only one anywhere---in ALL of Facebook--- that goes by that name, you are local and can be tied to the caregiver, well, you are a pretty stupid thief.
Old 08-12-2019, 08:43 AM
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