American Express, Mastercard and Discover have each announced that, starting in April, they will no longer require signatures on any U.S. and Canadian credit card purchases. (Actually, American Express is making the change for all its transactions worldwide.)

Visa hasn’t announced any plans to do the same. But there’s speculation it may eventually do so.

That pretty much would fully evaporate what may be the most common reason U.S. consumers still bother writing signatures, which were once the most prominent symbol of our financial integrity and proof of our identity.

The shift away from signatures also hints at the fantasy we all pretended to believe: that signatures actually proved something.

“The industry’s unspoken secret is that signatures on a credit card receipt are relatively worthless from a security standpoint,” said William McCracken, the president of Phoenix Synergistics, a metro Atlanta-based consumer market research company focused on the financial services.

Read more in the Wisconsin State Journal.