If your small business handles cash, it’s critical to avoid being the victim of counterfeiters. Historically, Canadian currency has been one of the most frequently counterfeited among the G20 nations. By 2002, things had gotten so bad that many retailers stopped accepting the most commonly counterfeited bill, the $100 bank note. The good news is that Canada made a change to polymer bank notes, and since then counterfeiting of Canadian bank notes has dropped dramatically. Nonetheless, you still need to protect yourself to avoid accepting phony money.
Spotting Counterfeit Bank Notes
Feel, look, flip” is a catchphrase you can use to remind your employees how to check for counterfeit Canadian bills:
- Feel refers to the distinctive texture and general touch that characterizes genuine notes. Many experienced handlers of cash, such as bank tellers, can detect counterfeit bills by feel alone. Polymer-based bank notes accentuate this feature with their definitively smooth feel.
- Look is the visual inspection of bills, including things like checking the transparency of the large window on bank notes and examining various details and fine printing that genuine notes exhibit.
- Flip bills to see if the metallic portrait is repeated in identical colours and details on the opposite side of the large window.
Canadian Bill Security Features
Familiarize your employees with the numerous security features that make it difficult to counterfeit Canadian polymer bank notes. Raised ink on the large printing of the bill denomination number, on the shoulders in the large portrait, and also in the printing of Bank of Canada or Banque du Canada make genuine Canadian bank notes easy to identify. Hold a bill directly in front of your eye and look through the frosted maple leaf window at a light source to see a circle of otherwise invisible numbers matching the denomination of the bill for more advanced detection.
If your business gets one of the paper bank notes still in circulation, check security features such as the small, ghost-like version of the portrait on the bill that only appears when held up to a light and the changing colours of numbers and maple leaves that become visible on the magnetic stripe of a bill when the bill is tilted back and forth.
Counterfeit Training From the Bank of Canada
The Bank of Canada offers free training on how to detect counterfeit Canadian money, and even tailors the training to the needs of your particular business. Have your employees take the online webinar class, and read the retail employee handbook, and take the quiz to test their knowledge.
Canadian bank notes have many features that can help you detect counterfeit currency. Train your staff on those features to help ensure the money that comes into your business is valid. Include other cash management strategies from QuickBooks in your repertoire of small business practices to stay ahead of the game. 4.3 million customers use QuickBooks. Join them today to help your business thrive for free.