Depositing Checks over the internet — April 2010, reviewed January 2013

You don’t feel like walking or driving to the bank to deposit a check or even taking the time to mail it?  Technology continues to change many banking tasks.  Now being added to the electronic options of automatic bill payment and managing your account online is depositing a paper check.  Not all banks offer this service but more will be adding this to their list of optional services.

In the banking and technology industries this is called ‘remote deposit capture’ or RDC.  This service is mostly marketed to small businesses that typically are paid by check and want to be able to quickly deposit those payments.  However, this could be a convenient option for consumers as well.

The consumer would need a scanner to take an image of the check and a personal computer to transmit the image online.  Another option would be a cell phone equipped with a digital camera to do the same thing.  This technology may give a bank customer quicker access to the funds deposited over the Internet.  Internet deposits are generally available in one or two business days as opposed to five business days for regular paper checks.

If you use remote deposit capture, ask your bank how to properly transmit the check images and how to safeguard your privacy, your equipment and the original paper checks. 

In this age of technology, your scanner or cell phone could also be your bank teller.  For more detailed information search the Federal Reserve Board website, and search for ‘remote deposit capture’.