Police have issued a warning to shop owners to check any $50 notes they receive after a counterfeit note was found in Lismore yesterday.
The note, which was used at a Lismore store, was easily torn and the yellow covering and other ink could be easily smudged, revealing white underneath.
Police issued a statement saying that when one note is discovered, there is a good chance that there are more being circulated in the area.
Shop owners are asked to check any $50 notes tendered in their stores, police said.
They also warned that people using fake notes will often target junior staff in busy times, or hide the fake in between real notes.
If someone is trying to use fake notes please call your local police station without delay.
Police issued a link that has a lot of helpful information on spotting counterfeit money.
Go to http://banknotes.rba.gov.au/co /counterfeit-detection-guide/
Tips on how to spot a fake
1 IS IT PLASTIC?
Australian banknotes are printed on plastic and have a distinct feel. A suspect banknote may feel excessively thick or thin compared to a genuine banknote. It is difficult to start a tear along the edge of a genuine banknote. You can also try scrunching the banknote in your hand a genuine banknote should spring back.
2 LOOK FOR THE COAT OF ARMS
If you hold the banknote to the light, you should see the Australian Coat of Arms.
3 LOOK FOR THE STAR
Diamond-shaped patterns are printed inside a circle on both sides of the banknote. If you hold the banknote up to the light, the patterns should line up perfectly to form a seven-pointed star.
4 CHECK THE CLEAR WINDOW
The clear window should be an integral part of the banknote and not an addition. Check that the white image printed on the window cannot be easily rubbed off. Also look for the embossing there is a wave pattern in the window of the $10 banknote, and the value of the banknote in the windows of $20, $50 and $100 banknotes.
OTHER SECURITY FEATURES
Other security features to check if you suspect a banknote might be counterfeit:
5 FEEL THE DARK PRINTING
It is produced with a special raised ink that can be felt with your finger.
6 CHECK THE PRINT QUALITY
The background printing should be sharp. Check for irregularities such as less clearly defined patterns, thicker or thinner lines, or colour differences.
7 LOOK FOR THE MICROPRINTING
Under a magnifying glass you will see tiny, clearly defined words on the top left corner of the $5 banknote and near the portraits on the other banknotes.
8 LOOK AT THE BANKNOTE UNDER UV LIGHT
Most of the banknote should not fluoresce. The exceptions are the serial numbers, a patch on the $5 banknote and a patch on the $20, $50 and $100 banknotes that also shows the value (e.g. 50).