Bank Regulations

December 10, 1998

Imagine for a moment that a relative died and left you a substantial inheritance. Or imagine that your boss was so impressed with your performance that he gave you a very generous year-end bonus. Now imagine that you put that money in the bank. That's where your dream could become a nightmare.

Recent proposed bank regulations would require that your bank report you to the federal government because you've now become a suspect. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation "know your customer" regulations would require member banks to profile account holders. When you suddenly deviate from your usual spending or deposit habits, your bank would be required to report you to the FBI, the IRS, and the DEA. You then may be required to prove to those agencies how and where you got the money. In essence, your local bank will become a snitch for the federal government.

Now you might ask, Why is this being done? It's being done in the name of law enforcement and drug busting. Profiling depositors seems like a good way to catch various criminals, including drug dealers. But like so many other government programs, it will probably just end up harassing law-abiding citizens.

Compare it to gun registration. Law-abiding citizens register their guns with the government, while most criminals use stolen and unregistered guns for crimes. Likewise, drug dealers will make sure they deposit money below the FDIC threshold and merely establish numerous bank accounts or store their money in safes. Meanwhile, law-abiding citizens will be questioned about money they deposit or withdraw from their banks.

The good news is that these regulations are just now being proposed. If you write the FDIC and express your concern, it's possible the regulations will never go into effect. So why don't you write a letter?

I'm Kerby Anderson of Probe Ministries, and that's my opinion.

© 1998 Probe Ministries International