Privacy in Banking

How US Banks Treat Their Customers’ Privacy?

Although information about your bank accounts and transactions is usually a matter between your banker and yourself, there can be exceptions.

State laws vary on bank-account privacy. In some states banks are allowed to reveal to merchants whether a customer has sufficient funds to cover a large check a retailer has just been given for a purchase. Some banks will even reveal the exact balance in an account over the telephone. Check with your own bank as to its policy in this area.

On the other hand, the 1978 Right to Financial Privacy Act places limitations, in certain circumstances, on disclosure of your private bank records to federal officials. Not all requests by the government need be honored. Moreover, if a bank is asked or required to turn over your records to a federal agency, you will usually be notified of that fact.