Fraudsters are using their arts and crafts skills to dupe businesses and unknowing pedestrians into accepting fake bond notes.
It’s the gift-giving time of year and one of the most requested gifts is simply money. As most Zimbabweans will be coming in from the diaspora, it’s likely that they will be victims of counterfeit money.
With reports of counterfeit currency circulating, Techunzipped felt it might be useful for readers to know how to spot counterfeit currency and what they should do when they encounter it.
This month an article on The standard , they reported counterfeit $5 were being passed in Harare. The counterfeiters have learned how to “bleach” the original currency and reprint larger denominations on these bills. Such bills cannot be spotted with the pens that are often used to detect counterfeit currency. The occurrence of the counterfeit notes comes at a time when cash is becoming more and scarcer, with the US dollar now a very scarce commodity.
As Money changers have flooded back onto the street last month following the coup, not a coup, that saw a change in the political landscape has seen a reduction in police presence on the streets.
Under the regulations gazetted in October this year through Statutory Instrument (SI) 122A of 2017- Exchange Control (Amendment) Regulations 2017 (No 5), police are now empowered to arrest illegal money-changers and seize whatever currency would be in their possession.
We’ll show you some of the tips you should be aware of when it comes to picking out counterfeit cash.
If you suspect a bill is counterfeit, politely refuse to accept the note. Advise the person to check the note with their bank and inform police of a possible attempt to pass suspected counterfeit money.
Here are the easiest ways to tell the difference between counterfeit bills and genuine Federal Reserve Notes:
Security features on both notes include a Zimbabwe bird watermark, see-through perfect register, tactile marks for the visually – impaired, security thread, alpha-numeric lettering and optically variable ink.
If you believe you have received a counterfeit bill, we advise that you do the following:
- Do not put yourself in danger.
- Do not return the bill to the passer.
- Delay the passer with some excuse, if possible.
- Observe the passer’s description and their companions’ descriptions and write down their vehicle license plate numbers if you can.
- Contact your local police station or call Harare Province 04- 771874 or Whatsapp 0712 800 197 / 0782 475 000.
Remember, if you are passed a counterfeit bill, you own it. So when accepting cash, it pays to be knowledgeable about the crime of counterfeiting.