To reduce and control the misuse, tampering and alterations of the cheque, Cheque Truncation System (CTS) is being introduced. These are image-based processing of cheques & will lead down certain features in the printing of cheque. There will be certain standardization of the cheques being used across the world which will also increase the speedy clearing of the cheques especially outstation cheques.
According to this circular of RBI, ( Direct PDF File ) Mandatory Features to be incorporated are :
- All the cheques being manufactured at the initial stage should continue maintaining the guidelines of Magnetic Ink Character Recognition (MICR) technology. All the cheques being manufactured should be of standard form size, MICR band, and quality of paper etc. In addition to it RBI has added few more mandatory features in the paper being used to manufacture cheque. The paper used in manufacturing of cheque should give a visible result if any of the chemicals or acids is being used for fraud purpose. Moreover the paper should be dull under Ultra Violet light.
- Standardised watermark “CTS-INDIA” to be used on all the cheques which will be visible while seen through any light source. It should be oval in shape with 2.6 to 3.0 cms in diameter. In consultation with Indian Banks’ Association (IBA) / National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) the standard watermark will be decided.
- To fight against the colour photocopy or scanned colour images of a cheque pantograph with hidden / embedded “COPY” or “VOID” feature shall be included in the cheques. There will be a specified resolution in CTS feature used in this pantograph which will not be visible in normal cheques. But will be visible in photocopies and scanned colour images as resolution used in this format will not be in CTS prescribed format.
- The bank’s logo should be printed in ultra-violet (UV) ink. This logo will be again visible in UV-enabled scanners / lamps.
- Few fields will be made mandatory on the cheques that will enable data capturing by Optical / Image Character Recognition (OCR / ICR). Further to ensure better quality and content of image light / pastel colour will be made mandatory on cheque so that the ration between the Print / Dynamic Contrast (PCR / DCR) is more than 60%.
- Strong step has been taken by RBI to control fraud. Customers will not be allowed to alter the amount and the payee name while issuing cheques. If done these cheques will not be honoured with effective 1st of July 2010. Here I doubt as many of us are not aware of the said guideline by RBI.