Paying bills by computer is "just around the corner" on January 7, 1968.

  • By David Wilma
  • Posted 5/26/2001
  • HistoryLink.org Essay 3303
On January 7, 1968, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer describes how paying bills by computer is "just around the corner." The syndicated article discusses technology that will allow consumers to use a new type of credit card which contains an invisible code which the cardholder memorizes. The code will be entered into a computer to validate purchases.

The new technology was being explored by banks and a pilot test was scheduled for 1969 or 1970, with general use predicted for 1973. The system promised to simplify the handling of 17 billion checks every year by 14,000 banks. The use of a "foolproof identification card ... would reduce losses to almost zero and consequently lower insurance costs."


Sources: Robert L. Kramer and W. Putnam Livingston, "Checkless Society Computer Could Handle Your Money," Seattle Post-Intelligencer, January 7, 1968, p. 21.

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