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An Internet Service for Checking Accounts Disclosure Number: IPCOM000014841D
Original Publication Date: 2002-Jul-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jun-20
Document File: 3 page(s) / 190K

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An Internet Service for Checking Accounts


A service that uses the internet to let people see images of their cashed checks and credit card slips.

   It is common for banks to let customers use the internet to see the latest transactions in their accounts. However, frequently a line that says that check number X was cashed does not really mean much to the customer. A customer may wish to see the check to know what it was for. Two issues affect to this service

   1. Binary images of checks are frequently unreadable, because checks may have color backgrounds, or several levels of gray, and binarization cannot always cope with that.

   2. Gray level check images are very big, and in addition to loading the servers and networks, it could be much too expensive to store them. It is the purpose of this disclosure to show how the DropOut technique, that is described in several IBM patents (US5182656, US5793887), can be applied to this specific task of check display through the internet.

   First, it should be noted that the bank issues the checks, so an empty check template can be recorded for every customer, or every checkbook style the customer uses. The template that belongs to a check can be easily recognized by associating a template style with a group of check numbers.

   When a check is cashed and processed by the bank, the template can be eliminated using the technologies mentioned above, preferably using gray level images. Only the data filled in on the check need be stored, and considering the quality expected on a standard PC monitor, even that small chunk of data may be compressed with a lossy algorithm. So 2 to 4KB of data should be enough to reconstruct a check image.

When a customer requests a check to be displayed, the following has to happ...