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Protect Your Identity:
Make Your Signature Forgery-Proof

 Identity Theft has been in the news every now and then. As this crime of Identity Theft becomes more prolific and widespread, what can you do to protect yourself?

One of the most important elements in protecting your identity is the authenticity of your signature. Your signature is the legal authorization required on all your documents.  As such, it becomes essential that you make your signature forgery-proof at all times. 


Forgery is difficult because no two people write exactly alike. It is impossible to duplicate the subconscious habits of another writer. A forger will tend to draw rather than write a signature. A trained forensic document examiner can identify forgery, in part, because of his ability to identify the natural tremors that show up under microscopic examination.

Your signature can be easily forged if:

  1. You over-simplify it (what I call “doctor’s handwriting”)
  2. You write slowly
  3. Your signature varies widely from one signing to the next
  4. You have a low skill level
The best way to forgery-proof your signature is to make it consistent and complex. The complexity of a signature is measured by how many times the lines cross one another. When possible, write using long stokes and change the direction. The more illegible the writing, the more difficult it is to forge.

Use the same signature for signing all legal documents, as well as the same kind of pen and ink. If you write a lot of checks, gel-based ink is best to defend against “check washing.” Practice your signature until you become skilled at signing it rapidly, and stylize your writing until it is difficult to imitate.

It is also advisable to have more than one signature: the one you use for correspondence, and one you use for signing legal documents.

Remember, any unique style you can introduce to your signature to individualize it will make it easier to prove your case, should you be the victim of forgery or identity theft.

This articles was originally submitted by Thomas Grogan, a member of the first graduating class of the forensic school.

Interested in becoming a forensic document examiner?

Handwriting University is now accepting applications
for the School of Forensic Document Examination.

Click here for details:


School of Forensic Document Examination



"The client gladly paid $500 for my opinion.  It was amazing that I am ready to take clients  after only eight months in the school."

- Peggy Walla, Class of 2005



"A recent Court TV program used the services of three renowned examiners to verify documents from the Lindberg Kidnapping. All the methods displayed on the program had been taught to our class! Thank you for sharing your expertise in the field of questioned document examining."

Barbara McCreary, Class of 2006 



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