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If a banknote is clean, it is easier to identify a counterfeit


This is the result of a study by De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB) and the German central bank, the Bundesbank. Over 500 Cashiers and consumers have participated in the research.

According to the results of the research, cashiers recognize an average of 88% of the counterfeit banknotes they are presented with. Among consumers, this percentage is 79%. Also, genuine banknotes are often mistaken for false. What’s more, cashiers are getting more and more suspicious, the researchers conclude.

On average, cashiers needed five seconds to recognize a counterfeit banknote. It took consumers 6.3 seconds to do this. Older people have more difficulty recognizing counterfeit bills than younger people. Elderly don’t check security features often

The research was conducted because the central banks wanted to know whether it is useful that the bills be cleaned. Annually the DNB checks 450 million banknotes on filth and authenticity

For DNB the results, after weighing the costs and benefits, give no reason to tighten the checking of banknotes.


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