Last Updated on by SCARS Editorial Team

Recognize Counterfeit U.S. Money

A United States Secret Service Guide

Provided by SCARSSCARS SCARS - Society of Citizens Against Relationship Scams Inc. A government registered crime victims' assistance & crime prevention nonprofit organization based in Miami, Florida, U.S.A. SCARS supports the victims of scams worldwide and through its partners in more than 60 countries around the world. Incorporated in 2015, its team has 30 years of continuous experience educating and supporting scam victims. Visit to learn more about SCARS.

Do You Know Your Money?

Learn How To Spot Counterfeit Currency With This Guide!

CounterfeitingCounterfeiting Counterfeiting is defined as the planned attempt to duplicate a real and authentic article such as a symbol, trademark or even money with the purpose to distort and convince the purchaser or the recipient to believe that he or she is really purchasing or receiving the real article itself. In the ecommerce and financial services industry, this often refers to counterfeit cards and checks. currency has been going on since people began using money. It has been dubbed “the world’s second-oldest profession” in some quarters, and we’re not talking about wooden nickels. According to the United States Department of Treasury, an estimated $70 million in counterfeit bills are in circulation, or approximately one counterfeit note for every 10,000 in genuine currency. You probably have some in your wallet right now!

Counterfeiting Is A Financial Crime! It Is A ScamScam A Scam is a confidence trick - a crime -  is an attempt to defraud a person or group after first gaining their trust through deception. Scams or confidence tricks exploit victims using their credulity, naïveté, compassion, vanity, irresponsibility, or greed and exploiting that. Researchers have defined confidence tricks as "a distinctive species of fraudulent conduct ... intending to further voluntary exchanges that are not mutually beneficial", as they "benefit con operators ('con men' - criminals) at the expense of their victims (the 'marks')". A scam is a crime even if no money was lost.!

Going as far back as 5th Century Rome, Alexander the Barber was one of the first famous counterfeiters. He became so well known that instead of being punished by the ruling Emperor Justinian, he was employed by the state finance department.

One of the first instances of counterfeiting took place in the American colonies when Native Americans would trade shells known as wampum as a form of currency. Blu