Remote deposit capture (RDC) is a system that allows a customer to scan checks remotely and transmit the check images to a bank for deposit, usually via an encrypted Internet connection. When the bank receives a check image from the customer, it posts the deposit to the customer's account and makes the funds available based upon the customer's particular availability schedule. Banks typically offer RDC to business customers rather than to individuals.
RDC is made possible by the Check 21 Act, passed in October 2003 and implemented in October 2004, which allows banks to clear checks based on images of the original checks, rather than necessarily having the physical checks in hand in order to post the deposit.
RDC is one of the fastest growing trends in banking technology, as it allows customers the convenience of depositing money from any location with a scanner, computer and internet connection, and makes those deposited funds available earlier. For banks, the RDC process circumvents the costly use of paper, and allows check processing to be completed more quickly.
However, RDC presents some particular security challenges. If an unencrypted Internet connection is used to transmit check images, for example, customers' account information could be sniffed and stolen. Another possibility is duplicate check presentment, in which physical checks that have already been scanned and deposited are stolen and re-cashed at a check cashing store. Thus, the privilege of RDC is often extended or denied based on credit worthiness.