Checking bank notes protects everyone, so don’t be offended if a cashier carefully examines your bills. Routinely checking the security features of all notes – large and small – allows cashiers to intercept counterfeits and keep them out of the till and out of your change.
Security features are helpful only if you use them. To fight counterfeiting, the Bank offers free training materials to help the public, businesses, and police agencies use the security features in genuine bank notes. If you know your notes, you’ll be able to detect a counterfeit at a glance and protect yourself from fraud.
Any individual who, knowingly or not, accepts a counterfeit bears the loss. In other words, there’s no reimbursement. It’s the same in any country. In Canada, it is a criminal offence to knowingly use or keep counterfeit money.
The financial loss from a counterfeit note can be significant for individuals and businesses alike. Whether it’s a small or large business, the loss incurred from accepting a single counterfeit $100 note can affect a day’s profits or lead to increased prices that are ultimately borne by the consumer.
Counterfeiting not only causes a financial loss to whoever gets stuck with it, it can also seriously undermine public confidence in our currency. Confidence is essential because once lost, it’s hard to regain.
If you suspect that you’re being offered a counterfeit note, assess the situation to ensure that you are not at risk. Then, do the following:
If you suspect that you’ve received a counterfeit note, give it to the local police.
The Bank takes counterfeiting very seriously and works with police and prosecutors to monitor and respond to counterfeiting threats and to minimize their impact on Canadians. We are focused on:
Achieving consistently low levels of counterfeiting is critical to maintaining confidence in bank notes.
Learn how to check them and access training and educational materials. All suspect counterfeit U.S. notes must be turned over to local police.
The RCMP publishes annual statistics on bank note counterfeiting in Canada.