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Counterfeit money in Europe

30th June 2013

Quantity of counterfeited banknotes by ECB report.

The European Central Bank (ECB) has announced that in the second half of 2012 in countries inside and outside the Euro area, a total of 280,000 counterfeit euro banknotes were withdrawn from circulation. This meant an increase of 11.6% compared to the number of the previous six months from circulation banknotes.

As is the past the 20 € and 50 € banknotes still were the most forged banknotes they account for 82.5 percent of all counterfeited and withdrawn banknotes.

Not included in these statistics are the counterfeits findings last summer with the amount of 9 million Euros in Paris, € 4 million in Peru and other spectacular finds.

The German Federal Bank announced further that during this period nearly 22,500 counterfeit Euro banknotes were registered in Germany. This represents an increase of approximately 18% compared to the 1st Half of 2012. On the first place is the 20 Euro banknotes which accounts 50% of all counterfeited notes in Germany, the next one is the 50 Euro banknote with 34%.

The German Federal Bank pointed out that notes should always be examined carefully, since it is no substitute for counterfeit money. In the test procedure security features should be included, because on several counterfeited banknotes are some security features copied on a high level. That makes it necessary to check more than one feature. Magnifying glasses, test pens or UV lamps do not always have a clear test result. These tools should therefore be better used in combination with the examination of other safety features.