Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Pay attention to your money

Awhile back, we were all given a refresher on how to check bills for counterfeits at the cafe. This weekend I actually did encounter 2 fake $5 bills. Unfortunately, we didn't spot them until we were doing cash.

Once before this, I was given a fake $10 as change, which I didn't notice until it got rejected at another shop. $10 gone bye bye. This is why I wanted to bring this up now.

It really isn't that hard or time consuming to check your bills when you get them. So why not protect yourself from getting them. You can read up what to look for on rea Canadian bills here. Or I posted an excerpt here.

1. Holographic stripe: located to the left of portrait on the front of the bill. If you tilt the note back and forth you will see 2 maple leafs that will change colour as you move the bill. Also, there will be small numerals in the background that match the amount of the currency. For example, on the $20 bill you will see small twenties.
2. Watermark portrait: in the white space just to right of portrait on the front of each new bill you will see a watermark version of portrait and the number that corresponds to the currency amount when you hold the note up to light. This security feature can be seen from both sides of the note.
3. Featured number: the front and back of each bill have some irregular marks that merge perfectly to form the number of the currency when you hold the bill up to the light. For example, on the $10 bill the broken lines turn into a perfect ten. Counterfeit bills will not have a perfect match.
4. Dashed lines: on the left side of the back of the note the dashed metallic lines will shift from gold to green as you tilt the bill. Inside in tiny type you will see the letters CAN followed by the denomination of the bill. Hold the note up to the light and the dashed lines will merge to form a continuous dark line.

For older bills:

The original $5 and $10 notes in the Canadian Journey series had a cluster of three iridescent maple leafs in the same area where the watermark is located on newer notes. The leaves change from a faint image to a shiny gold colour when you tilt the note back and forth. These notes also had a hidden number to the left of the portrait on the bill. When you hold the note at eye level and tilt it slightly a number 5 or 10 will appear on the bill.


FB @ said...

Thanks so much for the quick primer!

The only thing I question is people checking ALL of the bills, even $5 ones that people pay ...

I know when I hand over a $50 I get checked, and with a $100 I REALLY get checked.. lol

Fabulously Broke in the City

"Just a girl trying to find a balance between being a Shopaholic and a Saver."

Esme said...

No Worries FB.

You know, I've so far only encountered $5 and $10 fake money. Maybe that's more common? Counterfeiter probably has an easier time getting away with $5 and $10 (which is not checked by everyone) than $50 and $100, which everyone checks.