Counterfeit Detection

Written by Samuel Wong
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Counterfeit detection has taken a high tech route due to the recent introduction of duplication deterrent features produced by the U.S. Mint. Although counterfeit detection can only be reliably achieved through the use of mechanical products, there are some elementary steps that can be taken to spot phony currency at the spot of presentation.

As one may or may not realize, the most effective and cost-effective counterfeit detection machines continue to be our hands. With millions of nerve endings, our hands are extraordinarily sensitive to touch. Many experts concur that although the visual aspects of a bill can be duplicated, the paper used for US currency is almost impossible to duplicate. The least-known reason for this is the fact that the "paper" isn't really paper at all! US currency is printed on a material that is more appropriately referred to as "cloth."

Counterfeit Detection: How to Spot a Fake

The second most reliable method of counterfeit detection revolves around the visual inspection of a bill. The US has recently spent millions of dollars to introduce changes to our bills that are visible to the naked eye. These changes include color-shifting inks, which change color when tilted and watermarks, which are actually imbedded in the bill.

The best counterfeit detection strategies are acquired by staying current with the changes to our currency. Most people are not aware that it is not only illegal to attempt to use counterfeit currency; you can be prosecuted simply for possessing counterfeit bills. With so much at risk, many companies and even individuals no longer rely on physical skills but mechanical features to detect the authenticity of currency.

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