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What is UV Counterfeit Money Detection and How Does It Work?

Best way to check counterfeit money

You've also come across the term UV or ultraviolet whether you've been looking for a bill counter or a counterfeit money detector. The use of UV detection to check the validity of a bill is important. Counterfeit banknotes are often detected using UV scanners. UV detectors act in a simplistic but smart manner.

A UV stripe is found in the banknotes cloth/paper for all United States currencies excluding the $1. This stripe becomes colored when a UV light is held over it, even if it is noticeable with a backlight.

The position of the stripe on $5, $10, $20, $50, and $100 bills can be identified in our guide, which can be found here. Depending on the currency, you'll find that the strip is placed in various locations. This is for a really important cause. 

One popular approach for counterfeiting a bill is to take a legitimate bill, such as a $5 bill, bleach it, and then reprint a higher denomination on it. The bleached bill could pass a counterfeit detector if you are unsure of where the stripe is placed.

Counterfeit Money Detector / Scanner with UV Light

Counterfeit detectors that use ultraviolet (UV) light come in a variety of sizes and shapes. Some are compact and enable the operator to validate the stripe visually, whilst others merely pull in the bills and check them using a sensor. 

Although UV counterfeit identification isn't 100% accurate, it does capture the majority of counterfeit bills. Even though visual UV detectors capture almost anything, bleached bills can confuse some automated machines. If you're going to use an automatic counterfeit detector, make sure it has several counterfeit identification mechanisms.

After using many different forms of manual UV counterfeit detectors, I strongly advise you to use them indoors and, if necessary, in a darker setting. For a manual UV scanner which needs visual verification, direct lighting or outdoor usage is almost unlikely.

What Is Magnetic Detection And How Does It Work?

To design banknotes with sophisticated magnetic designs that aren't visible to the naked eye, central banks use ferromagnetic ink, which comes in a variety of colors. Metallic thread, of specific sizes and places, is often woven into banknotes by central banks. Easy fakes that don't produce magnetic ink or thread may be identified using manual magnetic detectors. 

Also advanced counterfeits can be detected by higher-end detectors including the Safescan 155, 165, 185, and 2600 series, which are designed to distinguish the exact thread and ink patterns special to each endorsed currency and denomination utilizing several magnetic sensors.

How Do Safescan’s Counterfeit Detectors Work?

Safescan has a counterfeit detector to fit any budget and requirement, ranging from basic detectors that enable you to manually inspect a single banknote element (such as ultraviolet or magnetic marks) to advanced, automatic multi-point detection equipment.

How Do Central Banks Protect Banknotes From Counterfeiting?

Counterfeit detectors make use of information and security features which central banks placed into banknotes on purpose. The specific treasury fabric is either a cotton-linen blend or, gradually, polymer-based, is the starting point for these features. The central banks then incorporate sophisticated ultraviolet, magnetic, infrared, color, and holographic features into every banknote. To fight bill bleaching, several currencies have a special, very precise size, thickness, and weight to every bill type (or denomination) 

What Is Infrared Detection And How Does It Work?

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Inks that show unique activity under illumination in the infrared band of the electromagnetic spectrum are used to print modern currency notes. Ink that reflects infrared light (glows) and ink which absorbs infrared light are the two types of IR ink available (turns black). Both are undetectable under natural daylight and require the use of specialized equipment to identify.  

Manual IR detectors, like the Safescan 235, enable you to visually inspect how a dollar bill reacts to IR frequencies; automated detectors, such as the Safescan 155, 165, 185, and 2600 series, use a series of IR absorbing and IR reflecting sensors to automatically recognize the individual IR reaction patterns special to each supported denomination and currency.

Contact PBS Office Today

If you have any more concerns, please call +1-800-359-0364! to speak with one of our experts. You will learn more about detecting counterfeits by reading our guide, which can be found here.

References and Resources

Counterfeit detector 

Electromagnetic spectrum 

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