The TALL Group of Companies, the UK’s leading provider of secure electronic and paper payments solutions is working with a growing number of high street banks that have all signed up as early adopters of UCN Plus®, in a move designed to strengthen the industry’s protection against cheque fraud within the UK payments systems.

Martin Ruda, Group Managing Director at the TALL Group of Companies, said; “The fundamental change to the UK cheque clearing system with the introduction of cheque imaging in October 2017 has seen more attempts of fraud, as criminals pro-actively look for opportunities in the new Image Clearing System (ICS). We are delighted that  major high street banks,  including Lloyds Banking Group, HSBC and Royal Bank of Scotland Group are participating in the UCN Plus® initiative and helping to ensure that counterfeit, forged and fraudulently altered cheques are robustly and automatically trapped and rejected wherever possible within clearing.”

The UCN Plus® (patented GB2569173), is an Image Survivable Feature (ISF), that has been developed by The TALL Group in partnership with DIA Europe, providers of the Kappa cheque fraud prevention platform used by many of the leading cheque clearing service providers. It enables the variable payment data – payee name, amount, date, etc – to be encrypted and hidden within a unique QR code printed on the face of all ‘special’ cheques issued by the TALL Group on behalf of the cheque bureau customers of the ‘early adopters’, together with those who wish to infill their own cheques using in-house software capable of printing cheques or through TALL’s well established ‘Checkprint Solution’ software for Corporate and SME cheque issuance.

The information held in the encrypted QR Code provides validation of the details on the face of the cheque and can greatly help with fraud prevention when the cheque image is scanned and verified within the new Image Clearing System.

In a move designed to support the fight against fraud in the UK cheque clearing system, TALL also announced recently that it was making its unique UCN Plus® fraud prevention tool available across the accredited cheque printing sector, at no charge.

Martin Ruda added,  “As a Group, we strive to assist our customers and provide solutions that can improve their operations. We are actively engaged in a programme of product innovation and new customer services to build on the requirements for Image Survivable Features and will be announcing further developments as we move through 2020.”