Understanding five facts about counterfeit currency
Counterfeit money is an enemy that many businesses face, and cash counters are a great defense. It doesn't matter the type of counterfeiting job or who made it. If it's fake, chances are these machines can quickly raise a flag to let owners know they're handling false bills. That's because there are sensors that detect fakes based on the following factors:
- Paper authenticity.
- Print quality.
- Paper fluorescence.
- Quantity of magnetic ink.
- Print resolution.
When combining all of these factors, the counters make it very difficult for a criminal to pass a fake bill to businesses without getting caught.
Five facts about counterfeits make cash counters relevant
To understand why cash counters are a necessity in a business, it's important to learn some of the important facts about counterfeiting. Here are five key things to learn:
- Cash remains king. Despite changes in payment patterns such as the rise of mobile and continued growth in debit cards, cash remains the primary form of payment of many consumers. A recent report found that 40 percent of all transactions were cash-based.
- It takes only one handoff for a counterfeit bill to work. Once a fake $20 or $50 bill enters the local circulation, it will keep changing hands until somebody discovers the impropriety. Sadly, once it's discovered, the last person holding the bill loses simply because they received a worthless piece of paper in exchange for goods or services.
- More fake cash is in circulation. According to the most recent data, the Secret Service seized $88.7 million in counterfeit bills in 2013. That's up 9 percent from the year before. Taking into consideration that they probably didn't seize all the fraudulent currency out there, that means there's likely more in circulation than ever before.
- The majority of all counterfeit bills use inkjet printer ink. Producing fake bills no longer requires a sophisticated operation involving a massive offset printing press plates. All it takes is a solvent to wash off the $1 or $5 bill's ink, some time to dry, and an inkjet printer to print new currency values on it. In 2013, 60 percent of all seized currency came from a digital printer of some kind.
- Counterfeiting arrests are on the rise. Since people only need solvent and an inkjet printer, the cost of entering the counterfeiting business is pretty low. As a result, the number of people arrested for counterfeiting rose 49 percent in 2013.
With all these facts, it's a good idea to consider using a cash counter in the back office as a defense against counterfeit bills.