Fake currency: Read how to detect it-CBN

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), has warned the public to be wary of fake naira notes, especially the higher denomination currently being circulated by criminals. This was just as the bank also explained how Nigerians could identify the fake Naira notes.

The apex bank said the distinguishing features of the new notes, which can be recognised by touch and visibility, are the raised print, the security thread, and the watermark.

Other areas such as the portrait, lettering and the denominational numerals on the obverse and reverse of the notes are embossed, the bank said. The apex bank further explained that raised prints provide tactility, while the security thread, which ordinarily looks broken but is not when held up against light, has “CBN” in small lettering printed on both sides of the notes.

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The CBN further said that the naira notes are protected against photocopying as they contain features that are visible under ultraviolet light: for example, the serial number on each note is black but turns green under ultraviolet light.

“Regardless of how itchy you are to behold the new naira notes, do not forget to scrutinise the new notes properly, especially outside the banks”, the CBN warned.

The apex bank’s spokesperson, Mrs. Sidi Ali Hamaka, in a statement on Friday, said it was in receipt of credible intelligence of the fake notes being spent in food markets and other commercial centres in major cities across the country.

She said unpalatable consequences awaited culprits of currency counterfeiting as they risk up to five years imprisonment when caught.

She said: “For the avoidance of doubt, Section 20(4) of the CBN Act (2007) as amended, states that: ‘It shall be an offence punishable by a term of imprisonment of not less than five years for any person to falsify, make or counterfeit any bank note or coin issued by the Bank which is legal tender in Nigeria.

“The CBN is in constant collaboration with relevant security and financial agencies to confiscate fake naira banknotes, arrest and prosecute counterfeiters. Members of the public are also encouraged to report anyone suspected of having counterfeit naira notes to the nearest police station, branch of the Central Bank of Nigeria or via contactcbn@cbn.gov.ng”.

Mrs. Hakama added that all Deposit Money Banks (DMBs), financial houses, Bureau de Change and the public are enjoined to be more vigilant and take all necessary precautionary measures to curtail the acceptance and distribution of counterfeit notes.

“Furthermore, the general public is encouraged to embrace alternative modes of payment, echannels, for day-to-day transactions to mitigate the risk of spreading counterfeit banknotes”, she added.

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