Check fraud is a very real issue for a wide range of people. The Association for Financial Professionals just released a study that found checks lead the way in payment fraud methods. Of the companies surveyed 62 percent were victims of fraudulent payments in 2014.

The study found three primary methods of payment frauds: checks, credit/debit cards and wires. Checks had a clear lead on the other two methods with 77 percent of fraudulent payments coming from these print products. Credit/debit cards were the second most reported payment fraud method with 34 percent and wires fell third with 27 percent of respondents citing this method.

Check fraud is no joke and can affect businesses and consumers alike. As such, it is important to make solid investments in check stocks with key security features. Print salespeople would be smart to market their checks by emphasizing the various security features their products have to offer. Here are a few key security precautions leading print distributors can offer their customers.

  • DocuCheck Watermark®: These security papers are prime for the printing of check stocks. The technology provides the highest level of check security available without needing to order custom stocks. The product offers multiple indicator stains that are nearly impossible to duplicate, providing check holders with extreme protection from fraudulent usage. The DocuCheck Watermark also boasts a low-polarity solvent that safeguards these print products against check washing.
  • TonerFuse® II: In order to protect documents with toner-printing, TonerFuse® II helps coatings bond the toner to paper fibers. The technology instantly verifies the authenticity of a check and makes the toner coating very difficult to remove. Any attempts at alternation of checks with TonerFuse® II are easily spotted, thus reducing the losses from attempted fraudulent payments. This technology is used in many all-encompassing security technologies. 
  • DocuCheck Ghost®: DocuCheck Ghost's primary protection method lies in an artificial watermark. The mark creates a unique but subtle pattern on the back side of your check stock. The distinct marking defends your documents against counterfeiting. These DocuCheck products also take advantage of TonerFuse II technology to secure an extra level of protection.
  • Heat Sensitivity: Heat-sensitive methods are a great way to protect your checks from duplication and payment fraud. The heat-sensitive ink responds to the heat generated by a photocopier, thus damaging the document and revealing cases of attempted fraud.
  • Warning: Some checks feature a simple warning feature. This is literally the word "warning" printed within the border of a check to warn potential criminals that there are a variety of security features embedded in the print document. It also has the added benefit of allowing the check recipient to confirm the check has the correct features and reject the document altogether if it does not.
  • DocuCheck Basic®Of the DocuCheck options, the basic version provides customers with the most affordable fraud resistance for their checks. The technology utilizes magnetic ink recognition and TonerFuse II to protect against the duplication of check stocks.
  • VOID Pantographs: This security measure protects specifically against attempts to photocopy or scan valid checks. When the product is put under a photocopier or scanner the word "VOID" will appear on the copied document. This will alert recipients of these falsified documents of the illegitimate check.
  • Microprint: Microprint check borders appear in extremely small type on your check stocks, so small that the text appears to be a straight line to the naked eye. The actual border can be verified through magnification to ensure the check was not tampered with. When there have been attempts to copy or scan the document, the border becomes a solid line even when magnified.

Whatever the security feature, it is important for print distributors to highlight these offerings to their customers. Fraudulent payments are still a very real concern in 2015 and consumers will flock to print businesses that can offer them products with the most protection. Be equipped to market your products correctly. In an increasingly competitive print industry, check stocks can be a great source of repeatable and steady revenue. Your company's security features can be the difference between a closed sale and a lost one, make sure you prevent the latter.