Challenger Bank Cheese will accept other forms of identification


PASADENA, Calif .– (COMMERCIAL THREAD) – Cheese, the revolutionary platform of challenger bank and social cause, today announced that it is expanding access to its banking services by offering alternative methods of identification to open an account to customers without a social security number .

Instead of sharing a Social Security number, Cheese will also consider applicants who provide a current visa and valid passport as alternate identification along with a valid established address in the United States. Potential clients can offer one of seven valid visas if they do not have a social security number.

“I am very proud and excited to present an accessible digital banking platform with alternative identification. This has been the number one priority for Cheese since our inception. As an immigrant who arrived in the United States on a student visa, I have seen firsthand how requiring a social security number means that many people are excluded from financial services. Providing a platform that welcomes immigrants as well as non-immigrants opens doors for everyone, ”said Ken Lian, CEO and Co-Founder of Cheese.

There are about 45 million immigrants to the United States with a purchasing power of $ 1.3 trillion, according to bipartisan research firm New American Economy. Many were unable to open bank accounts because they did not have a Social Security number issued in the United States, a concept that originated in 1935 as part of Social Security law. Social Security numbers, intended to track income over an American’s lifetime to determine retirement benefits, have had the long-term effect of blocking access to basic banking services, especially immigrants. .

Lian added, “Fintechs generally don’t offer banking platforms without the need for social security numbers as this is a very complex process from a regulatory and technological perspective. We moved mountains to make this happen, but we did it because it is a crucial step in the next generation of financial access if it is to be truly inclusive and reflect today’s global community. . To that end, making more accessible credits and loans is next on our list. ”

Cheese was launched in March of this year. Using Cheese’s physical or virtual debit card, Cheese users can earn up to 10% cash back at over 10,000 retailers or restaurants, including many Asian restaurants and businesses. And through its social cause platform, customers can be part of a larger movement to support Asian businesses and communities. Any customer can donate their $ 5 sign-up bonus or a portion of their cash back funds to the Cheese Give Back Fund, which donates all of their profits to organizations like Welcome to Chinatown, AAPI Women Lead, the ‘Asian Pacific Fund and other non-profit organizations. To date, over $ 33,000 has been donated by Cheese customers.

Actor Jimmy Wong, Community Director of Cheese and son of immigrant parents, said, “We want diaspora communities of all origins in the United States to know that they can find a bank challenger in Cheese. They will not be denied financial access or assistance because they do not have a social security number. ”

To learn more about Cheese or to create an account, visit and Cheese does not charge a fee. Third party charges may apply.

About cheese

Our mission is to give people financial freedom and provide a platform to make real improvement in their communities. The company offers competitive banking solutions with cash back, deposit bonus and zero fees. In the app, Cheese uses industry standard security, encryption and authentication practices to protect your data and personal information.

Banking services provided by Coastal Community Bank, FDIC member. The Cheese Debit Card is issued by Coastal Community Bank, FDIC member licensed by Mastercard International. Cheese accounts are insured by the FDIC up to $ 250,000 per depositor through the Coastal Community Bank, a member of the FDIC.

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