Abbreviate 2020 and Risk Getting Scammed
If you sign a document with today's date, don't write 1-9-20 because that leaves room for scammers to get you. There's something about the 20 that could cause big problems this year.
Police admit it's not a high probability scam, but it could happen. Abbreviating the year by writing "1-9-20" instead of the full "2020" could allow unscrupulous types to tack some numbers on the end to change the year, and perhaps make you owe money several years back.
If you sign a document tomorrow and agree to start making payments on "1-10-20," a scammer could easily add an "05" on the end and change the document to "1-10-2005." And suddenly you'll owe fifteen years of back payments. It's still your signature, but the document isn't correct anymore.
USA Today says it's best to write out "January 10, 2020," and apparently, we're going to have to keep up that habit for the whole year. In 2021, the bad guys won't have any luck with tacking numbers onto the 21, because those years haven't happened yet. So ha.
It seems like kind of a stretch to think that this will be a huge problem this year, but police are sending the warning so we will too. I'm still going to assume that most of humanity remains good, dang it, and real estate transactions, bank documents, car loans, and doctor's office forms will be just fine this year.
And everything else is electronic so we don't have to worry about it. Happy New Year!