Apparitions of a Cashless Society and an Online connected Life

I can better that.
Went into a bank branch with a cheque sent to me by the Gov to put it into my account. Several employees behind the counters, so waited in line to be served by one.
The one who served me when my time came, came out from behind the counter, and walked me out of the branch to the ATM outside and showed me how to deposit a cheque into the machine.
Now I generally have no problem with getting cash out of an ATM, but I do not trust putting cheques into them.
Anyway, cheques are a very rare thing these days so hopefully I’ll never see another again.

They still exist.
For any of us less than financially fluent with how banking and funds transfers are secured. There is heightened fear from the frequent news references to money being lost, and the relatively few but well publicised failures of monumental proportion. Is it possible also to ignore the shock jock factor that resonates with many.

The future and any replacement needs to be within the capabilities and meet the needs of 100% of everyday Australians. Considering there is a substantial gap between the better off living in a capital city tech paradise and the pensioner living in Boulia or back of Burke or any far flung corner of Australia. One is more likely to grab the mobile to complain in fear of finding a live spider inside their recently treated urban apartment. The other the cost of saddle soap despite no longer owning a horse and still knowing how to ride. A good guess is the average bank will find difficulty in understanding the point just made. It’s generational and education/societal. Alternately a focus towards the more profitable of the future.

Do any know with surety the numbers either side of the divide? One take assuming the ongoing exit of banks from face to face leaves one to depend on digital connection.

Or consider this in context of how different community groups connect and whether they are at disadvantage with how delivery of banking and financial services is changing. An assumption is a cashless economy relies on digital identity and access.

Apologies, a more recent study might improve on how it is.

On the other hand, as someone who has embraced the online world since before the WWW became a thing (1991) and hardly ever have to deal with bill paying or comms in anything other than online, I can find myself flummoxed on how to deal with manual offline processes.

A cheque in the mail. What the hell do I do with this to get it into my account? Go to a bank branch. Where? Have to google it to find one. Do I fill out a deposit slip like the old days?

A form arrives in the mail. Fill it out and sign and return. Jeez off to the post office. Where is one? How much do stamps cost these days? I have no idea.

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I hear you! I’ve been using the online world since before the Internet reached Australia, too.

I don’t know the current cost of stamps, either - I’d have to look it up online. :wink:

Maybe you can still submit cheques by post? It once was standard practice if you couldn’t get to a branch. You’d write (and sign) a letter to the bank asking them to pay the enclosed cheque into a particular account, or move money between accounts, etc, and authorising them to extract from a specified account whatever fees were involved.

I wonder if banks would even be able to process a written letter of that kind these days? :thinking: Those were more trusting days, when an unwitnessed signature could be accepted as positive ID. Now they’d surely have to contact the writer and confirm it was genuine.

While a once off (for now) with history explained the inter-relationship between local vandals/perps, businesses, banks/ATMs, and consumers has hit Kunanurra. Nearest banking is an 800km trip. No information whether the IGA or Tuckerbox dispense cash. If they do where do they get it? An 800km runner? I hope they have great net services for their cashless society and online life :expressionless: !

‘Step by step, slowly [we] turned…’

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An interesting thought.
It’s to wonder whether our education systems still teach the necessary skills?

This very topic refers to “Apparitions” - IE how does something appear. Politely every generation grows up in a different environment compared to the previous. Where one grows up (societal) and the educational opportunities also differ.

For some of us less young learning new skills and adapting to the digitally connected future was an easier choice. It came with our career, either directly employed in IT or in employment where technology was brought to you by the employer. Adapt to it or leave.

It’s a polite suggestion that we all relate to todays connected life differently because of our different situations and experiences in life. There’s no harm in pointing out one size does not fit all. The potential for harm comes when others start offering only one size.

The fashion industry has worked it out. I’ve no way of returning to a 33” girth. Fortunately there are skinny legged low cut choices that accomodate a great variety of body shapes.

To note:

  • My GP’s practice still offers paper forms, on line optional. Similar for other medical services.
  • The banking and financial services businesses - not so or mostly not so. Although to note from involvement with several recent estate settlements paper work is the only way for certain functions.
  • A special note when one is asked to provide an updated proof of ID or binding beneficiary nomination for super, etc. only in person with physical evidence to hand or via the post, document copies certified.

This is moving OT but there was recently an ‘ad’ on FB from a local historical society looking for people who could read cursive writing and transcribe troves of old letters to text.

Earlier in the past decade my bank got to a point where it refused my signature since it had evolved from that on file. I got off easy at the time only having to face the branch staff with my trove of ID. Today they would likely have required certified copies sent in the post. The confounding part is that digital signatures, even those typed into the little box, are often accepted! In other cases a scribble using ones finger on a screen is the norm. No actual signature necessary.


I’d like to see a definitive, unbiased report on the safety and reliability of ATMs, online banking, and use of phones etc to pay for items. Arguably, cash is the safest & most reliable form of payment - especially when withdrawn in person from a bank.

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Maybe. There were conmen before there was electronic transfer who persuaded people to part with cash using many of the same techniques as modern scammers, preying on greed, love, lust and fear. You can still lose cash and have zero chance of getting it back. If your card is destroyed you can get another, if your cash goes down with the boat or a bushfire not so much, unless specifically insured and then the amount would be limited.


A thief can also take cash, rarely recoverable.

However the risk reward of having cash for that ‘systems down moment’ that prevents one from buying groceries or petrol, priceless.


Online theft can be of a vastly higher amount than someone would typically carry in cash.

I could speculate that it is safer these days to carry cash than it used to be because a simple mugging for cash or bag snatch isn’t worth the trouble these days (since so many transactions are done electronically). Why take the risk of a mugging or bag snatch if your yield for many people will be $0 when you can drain their bank account with an online scam or hack and potentially get thousands of dollars?