It seems the older we get, the more guarded we become when it comes to scams and theft and fraud and such. It must just be something that comes with experience. Fool me once, right? Ironically though, the older adult generation, who is often the wariest of us all, is also the quickest to whip out the least secure method of payment in existence – the checkbook.
There are people out there who will take the time to shred junk mail but give no second thought to handing or mailing a total stranger a piece of paper with their full name, address, bank account number, routing number, and worst of all… their signature. Why is the signature a problem? Because it can be easily scanned and reproduced onto another check – an easy way to steal someone’s identity.
Now if you’re reading this, you’re obviously online. You possibly do online banking… perhaps a little debit card usage, and a little check usage, depending on your age. I was recently reminded of a correlation between age and check-usage.
Three-quarters of Millennials say mobile banking is important to them, and 61% of people under the age of 24 have never written a check.
I’m 32 – On the older side of the Millennial generation. And I will admit to being an occasional check-writer. In fact, I just wrote one to the roof inspector this morning, who I don’t know from Adam. More in-line with my age group, I also review our account on my Bank of America phone app every day. Just to make sure everything’s on the up and up.
Side note: Speaking of phone apps, I detest sending money via smart phone apps, i.e. Venmo and Cash App. It’s not that they’re not secure. It’s not that these aren’t great apps. They are. My issue is that, as soon as I download, learn and link one app to my bank account, another similar app seems to become popular. I have no desire to keep repeating this process. It seems everyone has a different preference. And each time I catch myself rolling my eyes at a younger generation quick to download the latest money-sharing app, I feel my “old age” resisting what I feel to be an unnecessary change. My brain is yelling, “Can’t we as a society just pick one and stick to it?” while another part of me is saying, “learning is life. Growing is living.”
But there is no doubt, online banking, is NOT the future. It is the present. And whether you are 32 or 82 or however old, don’t fear the debit card, automatic bill payments, or a new way of doing things. Continually learning is part of what keeps you young. I personally hope I never stop learning new things. Even if it means letting go of a piece of the past. Like the checkbook.