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Cheque fraud

Know more about the different types of cheque fraud you could encounter.

Forged cheques

Forged cheques are stolen legitimate cheques bearing a forged signature.

How to avoid forged cheques
  • Keep your cheque book, cancelled cheques and statements in a safe place
  • Check your cheque statements every month
  • Collect your new cheque book yourself
  • Only accept cheques from people you trust
  • Look out for alterations on the payee and amount written in words and figures
  • Look out for spelling errors on the drawer’s details and bank branch name
  • Make sure there are no stamps placed in areas that could hide alterations
  • Never accept typed cheques
  • Be wary of cheques issued in black felt-tipped pens
  • Don’t accept unsigned cheques
  • Report lost or stolen cheques immediately

Cheque washing


Fraudsters use specific chemicals to ‘wash’ or clean details off legitimate cheques to replace with other information.

How to prevent cheque washing
  • Keep your cheque book, cancelled cheques and statements in a safe place
  • Check your cheque statements every month
  • Collect your new cheque book yourself
  • Don’t sign blank cheques
  • Complete beneficiary details in full
  • Use crossings accordingly
  • Write and sign clearly with a non-erasable ballpoint pen
  • Only accept cheques from people you trust
  • Look out for alterations on the payee and amount written in words and figures
  • Look out for spelling errors on the drawer’s details and bank branch name
  • Make sure there are no stamps placed in areas that could hide alterations
  • Never accept typed cheques
  • Be wary of cheques issued in black felt-tipped pens
  • Don’t accept unsigned cheques
  • Report lost or stolen cheques immediately

Altered cheques

Altered cheques are legitimate issued cheques that have been intercepted by fraudsters who change the original details on the cheque.

How to avoid altered cheques
  • Only accept cheques from people you trust
  • Look out for alterations on the payee and amount written in words and figures
  • Make sure there are no stamps placed in areas that could hide alterations
  • Never accept typed cheques
  • Be wary of cheques issued in black felt-tipped pens
  • Look out for spelling errors on the drawer’s details and bank branch name
  • Don’t accept unsigned cheques
  • Report lost or stolen cheques immediately
  • Be wary of cheques issued in black felt-tipped pens
  • Look out for spelling errors on the drawer’s details and bank branch name
  • Don’t accept unsigned cheques
  • Report lost or stolen cheques immediately

Counterfeit cheques

Counterfeit cheques are fake cheques printed on non-bank paper. Typically, the cheque’s account number doesn’t exist against the issued cheque.

How to avoid counterfeit cheques
  • Only accept cheques from people you trust
  • Look out for alterations on the payee and amount written in words and figures
  • Make sure there are no stamps placed in areas that could hide alterations
  • Never accept typed cheques
  • Be wary of cheques issued in black felt-tipped pens
  • Look out for spelling errors on the drawer’s details and bank branch name
  • Don’t accept unsigned cheques
  • Report lost or stolen cheques immediately