Having difficulty telling fake from genuine new notes? Here are 4 ways to help you

As the Kenyan Government rolls out the new generation notes, concerns have been piling among a section of Kenyans that the new currency has already been counterfeited.

Recently, unconfirmed reports suggested that at least two or three people have been nabbed in possession of fake Ksh1000 notes.

With very few Kenyans in possession of the new generation money, a section of traders and service providers are skeptical about receiving the new notes as payment for their products and services, saying they are not able to tell fake new money from the original.

The Central Bank of Kenya, however, on their website www.centralbank.go.ke/currency-services/, outlines some of the features you can use to identify genuine money.

“We encourage the public to be aware of the available security features incorporated in genuine currency notes and to be able to distinguish between genuine and fake notes. Each genuine banknote incorporates a number of security features that make the counterfeiting of the currency notes extremely difficult,” says the CBK.

“The following are public security features to be checked by each member of the public:

Portrait Watermark

A three-dimensional portrait of a lion’s head can be seen when the note is held up to the light. The watermark has a three-dimensional appearance with areas in varying tones of dark and light. Below the watermark is the value numeral of the banknote. This number can be seen when the note is held up to the light. Both the portrait and value numeral depict some brightness when held up to the light.

Serial Numbers

The serial numbering style is asymmetrical and has progressively larger digits in adjacent positions. One set of serial numbers appears horizontally, the other vertically. The vertical serial numbers on the left hand side of banknotes glow under UV light

See Through Feature

Each of the banknotes has a see-through feature that forms a perfect complete elephant when held up to the light. When looked at from one side, the image does not form any recognisable feature until held up to the light.

Security Thread

All genuine banknotes have a distinct interwoven thread running vertically down the right hand side of the notes. When held up to the light, the thread appears as a continuous line and it shows a series of text featuring the denomination numeral of the note and the letters CBK. The current generation of banknotes features two types of threads:

For the Ksh1, 000 and Ksh500 denominations, the thread is thicker and portrays a colour shift when viewed at angles.

The Ksh50, Ksh100 and Ksh200 denominations have a thinner thread, silver in colour, and do not depict any colour shifts when viewed at angles.

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