If you accept hard currency at your business, counterfeit detection should be a priority for you. You should be training your employees for effective manual examination of different types of bank notes and providing them the necessary tools they need to detect fake bills—namely, counterfeit detectors.
You might think counterfeiting is only a real threat to financial institutions and gambling establishments, but this simply isn’t true. Counterfeit money can be passed off at any type of business, no matter how big or small. It’s your responsibility to keep your profits safe by identifying counterfeits before you accept them. If you ignore this threat, you’ll be the one who will be faced with the loss in the end. And this can hurt your bottom line.
Here are some of the reasons why counterfeit detection is more important than you think.
Counterfeiters Are Difficult to Catch
Counterfeiting has been around for just about as long as money has. Dishonest people will take advantage of any method they can to make some quick cash. Though the police do their best to confiscate counterfeit money, it’s incredibly difficult to link the fraudulent bills to any source. That means the criminals are free to keep performing their illegal activities, without much worry of being caught. Once their bills are in circulations and out of their hands, they aren’t too concerned about where they end up. They don’t care if they are confiscated, because they likely won’t be linked to them and they can just create new bills.
The Issue is Prevalent
According to the RCMP, in 2014 alone, more than 60,000 fake bank notes were confiscated in Canada. But this only highlights a fraction of the real number. It does not include the counterfeit bills that are still in circulation—just the ones that were identified. To prevent your business from becoming one of the tens of thousands of stores that have accepted fake cash, invest in counterfeit detection.
Counterfeit bank notes can take many forms, depending on the sophistication of the criminal making them. Low-quality fake bank notes can be made by low-level criminals with a color scanner and printer. High-quality counterfeits can be produced and sponsored by hostile foreign terrorist groups, international drug cartels, and crime syndicates trying to fund their illegal activities. Criminals with big budgets and state-of-the-art technology can make bills that are nearly identical to authentic ones, making it difficult to spot the differences.
Even though governments are always coming up with innovative security features and high-tech technology to authenticate them, criminals are always right behind them, finding ways to imitate them and thwart detection. You need to be well informed and vigilant about counterfeit detection, use the latest technology, and properly train your staff to identify the signs of fraud to be able to effectively detect counterfeits at all levels of quality.
The Bigger Picture
Having to absorb the loss due to counterfeit isn’t something any business owner wants to be forced to do. But there are bigger issues at play. When you look at the bigger picture, counterfeit affects us all.
It increases costs of goods for consumers as stores increase their prices to make up for the losses. But more significantly, it’s also a national issue. Having counterfeit money in circulation is harmful on the economy. It can devalue our dollar, which has national and international effects. It also forces law enforcement to put more government money and manpower behind anti-counterfeit taskforces.
Clearly, counterfeit detection is of vital importance not only for store owners, but also for the nation as a whole. Consumers, business owners, and officials must work together to combat the issue.