If you suspect you’ve been stuck with counterfeit money, you should be able to verify your suspicions with a quick check. Knowing what telltale signs to look for can keep you from being ripped off in a cash transaction.
One of the better posts we’ve seen on the topic came from way back in 2007, courtesy of Wise Bread. Here are some indications that your money isn’t worth the paper it’s printed on:
* Texture. Real money, made with linen and cotton, has a distinctively crisp feel. Compare it to another bill in your wallet.
* Look for the watermark. Hold the bill up to the light and you should be able to see a telltale image emerge. If the watermark doesn’t match the portrait or denomination of the bill, it might be a reprinted forgery.
* Check for color-shifting ink. Larger bills are imprinted with ink that appears to be a different color when you look at it from an angle rather than head-on.
If you’ve got a counterfeit bill, take it to the authorities rather than a bank.
How to Spot Counterfeit Money [Wise Bread]