Kavan Ratnatunga passed along this article on ink-stained banknotes from the European Central Bank.
The ink on these banknotes is from anti-theft devices, also known as intelligent banknote neutralisation systems (IBNSs), which are activated when criminals open a protected cash container, such as an ATM or a safe in a cash transportation vehicle. These systems make stolen banknotes unusable and worthless, thus reducing the risk for retailers, banks and other professional cash handlers of becoming victims of crime.
How to recognise a stolen ink-stained banknote?
When a banknote is stained by an intelligent banknote neutralisation system (IBNS), the security ink soaks into the banknote and leaves traces which are normally more pronounced on the edges of the banknote. The colours of the most commonly used security inks are bright violet, green, blue, red or black. The ink usually flows from the edges towards the centre of the banknotes and leaves a characteristic pattern. Sometimes, the chemicals that criminals use to wash the banknotes when trying to remove the ink can change the colour. As a result, the banknotes' original colours could also be altered, and some security features may be damaged, or may even disappear.
Does it mean that all ink-stained banknotes are stolen?
No. If there are very light stains or a couple of small marks on the banknote and the edges are intact, then the marks are most likely accidental, caused for example by a pen dripping ink.
"Is this used on US$ notes as well?
I was shown a few US$100 notes with slight purple ink stains at the edge. The banker who sent me this image wants to know if this method is US ATMs or if EC ATMs also issue US$ and would have been subject to IBNS.
This should have much more publicity among the Public and on Social Media "
I'm not sure- what do readers think?
To read the complete article, see:
Have you ever come across a banknote covered with ink?
Wayne Homren, Editor
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