It seems like the best way to protect your checking account is to not do any online banking, right? Wrong. That’s the most financially risky thing you can do. Angela found out why.
Angela put her checkbook in her purse and went to the grocery store. She had heard about “card skimmers,” that can steal the information from the magnetic stripe on credit cards and debit cards, so she didn’t use payment cards if she could avoid it. Instead, she wrote checks. Sometimes she got irritated looks for holding up the line while she wrote a check, but she didn’t mind. “Better to be safe than sorry,” she thought.
Also, Angela knew that people sometimes had their money stolen by identity theft. She knew that people who did online banking sometimes had their entire checking account emptied in a matter of seconds, and she didn’t want that to happen to her. So, she didn’t create an online account. After all, how could a criminal log into her account if she didn’t have one? So when she needed to do any banking, she just went to the bank. They had an ATM, and she used that most of the time. And most days she got off work before the drive-through teller’s window was closed. Perfectly convenient, and perfectly safe. Or so she thought.
At the store, she grabbed one of the small carts and started going down the aisles. Whole grain bread. Dijon mustard. Ice cream! What flavor? Hmmm… Chocolate this time. On to the next aisle.
Angela looked for the shortest checkout line. It seemed like the best line would be Lane 3, so she pushed her cart over there. The checker was a young man, in his early twenties, she guessed. Nice haircut, new shirt. She liked to imagine stories about the people she came across. She decided this young man was probably working his way through college, earning money to pay his expenses.
She began taking the groceries out of her cart and putting them on the conveyor belt. The man in front of her reached into his wallet and pulled out a debit card. Inwardly, she rolled her eyes. How could people take such chances with their money?
Her mind wandered back to the checker. Working part-time in a grocery store while going to college wouldn’t be enough for everything, though, so she guessed he…