Check Washing

By: Chastity Walberg Email
By: Chastity Walberg Email

Whether you use a credit or debit card, cash or check, when you make a purchase somewhere you have to pay for it.

In a growing scam known as check washing, it could be easier for criminals to steal your identity and your money.

Check washing is done when someone get a hold of a check, uses common household chemicals to wash the ink off while keeping the signature intact, and fills out the check for a different amount of money and to a different recipient.

There are a few pens on the market that claim to prevent check washing.

We tested these pens to find out if they stood up to their claims. We also tested several other types of ink in pens that are commonly used.

The Uni-ball 207 and the Pilot G2, which both claim to prevent check fraud, did extremely well in our tests without any fading.

The Bic Mark It and Sharpie permanent markers didn’t fare as well.

Ink from a Papermate stick pen, which is a fairly common pen, didn’t come off the paper completely, but faded significantly.

In addition to protecting your money by using them on checks, the check safe ink can also be used on important legal documents, doctor prescriptions and other documents you wouldn’t want to be tampered with.

To see the results of our tests and the types of pens used, click on the images below.

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