Status report on euro counterfeits recovered in the first half of 2016

Banknotes

In the first half of 2016 a total of 1,852 counterfeit euro banknotes were recovered in Slovakia. Almost half of them were seized before entering circulation, and therefore did not pose a threat to cash circulation.

Half-yearly trend in the number of counterfeit euro banknotes recovered

2009

2010

2011

2012

2013

2014

2015

2016

Period

1H

2H

1H

2H

1H

2H

1H

2H

1H

2H

1H

2H

1H

2H

1H

Number

1,163

938

664

789

720

5,540

790

654

979

1,736

1,910

1,556

1,878

1,046

1,852

The most numerous denominations of the counterfeit banknotes recovered in first half of 2016 were €50 (60.2% of the total), €100 (14.6%) and €20 (13.2%).

Number of counterfeit banknotes by denomination

€5

€10

€20

€50

€100

€200

€500

Total

Number

11

30

244

1,115

270

45

137

1,852

%

0.6

1.6

13.2

60.2

14.6

2.4

7.4

100.0

While the quality of counterfeit banknotes is generally high, people can detect them without special equipment if they stay vigilant when receiving banknotes. Genuine banknotes can be easily recognised using the "FEEL - LOOK - TILT" test described and demonstrated on the euro pages of the ECB's website (www.ecb.int) and the websites of the Eurosystem national central banks.

Coins

In the first half of 2016 a total of 9,622 counterfeit euro coins were recovered in Slovakia, of which  658  were withdrawn from circulation. Counterfeit €2 coins accounted for 97.7% of the total, and 8,964 of them were seized in a single operation by law enforcement authorities before entering circulation. Despite the increase in the number of coin counterfeits, their ratio to the total number of genuine euro coins in circulation remains very low.

Half-yearly trend in the number of counterfeit euro coins recovered

2009

2010

2011

2012

2013

2014

2015

2016

Period

1H

2H

1H

2H

1H

2H

1H

2H

1H

2H

1H

2H

1H

2H

1H

Number

193

617

642

767

786

842

896

2,111

3,216

29,271

1,511

1,213

971

854

9,622

The technical quality of coin counterfeits is mostly high or very high, and it may therefore be quite difficult for people to detect them, especially if insufficient attention is paid to coins when received.

Number of counterfeit  euro coins by denomination

50 cent

€1

€2

Total

Number

163

60

9,399

9,622

%

1.7

0.6

97.7

100.0

The easiest way to detect a counterfeit coin is with a simple magnet. Genuine €1 and €2 coins have a magnetic core and therefore by applying a magnet to the core it is possible to compare the magnetism of a suspect coin with that of a genuine coin. It is also important to observe the general appearance and colour of a suspect coin. In the case of a suspect €2 coin, it is also recommended to check the edge lettering.

More detailed information about the common and national sides of euro circulation coins can be found on websites of the ECB and Národná banka Slovenska.