Don't Abbreviate 2020 When Signing Documents, Police Say

Don't Abbreviate 2020 When Signing Documents, Police Say

Police have warned that anyone signing important documents or checks with an abbreviation of 2020, i.e. "20", could put themselves at risk of fraud.

But writing out 2020 "could potentially save you some trouble down the road", the department wrote in the post.

But abbreviating 2020 to 20 means that a criminal could write two numbers after the 20 to imply that the document was dated before or after it actually was.

Why? The date is easily changeable and criminals can adjust it so that it could be used against you. But, as we turn the calendar into the year 2020, consumer advocates are cautioning people to pay attention to how they date things.

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For example: A scammer could change a check or document signed 1/3/20 to read as if it was dated 1/3/2019 or 1/3/2021. In a message emailed to USA TODAY Thursday, Rheingold said scammers could use the method to establish an unpaid debt or to attempt to cash an old check.

Post-dating documents could also be a potential issue.

Rheingold says just opt to write the full date; writing the month would help, too. Instead, write out "2020" in its entirety. Why?

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