Cash is king, or so they say! When you’re out of town, away from an ATM or simply shopping with a merchant who doesn’t accept card payments, carrying cash can make for quick and easy transactions. Some people find paying with cash helps them budget better. For others, cash just burns a hole in their pocket! Either way, don’t get burned by counterfeit bills.

Do you know how to spot counterfeit bills?

  1. Feel for texture. An authentic bill will have little ridges, particularly around the Presidential image. The printing process gives each bill an “embossed” feeling that you won’t find on a bill created from a normal printer.
  2. Look for security threads. Each denomination will have a security thread running vertically along either side of the President, with the thread changing sides depending on the denomination. These are visible when held to the light, but will not be present in a counterfeit bill.
  3. Check for color shifting When you look at the denomination in the lower right corner straight on, it should be copper in color. When you tilt the bill away from you, the denomination should turn green.

For more information visit the U.S. Currency Education Program and check out the many security features of each denomination.