Cyprus Police Department is in contact with Europol, as part of efforts to infiltrate a gang bringing forged euros and fake credit cards into Cyprus.
The general public has been alerted to be on the lookout for fake euros, with 24 cases of counterfeit currency notes having been reported to the police since the introduction of the currency to Cyprus.
The European Central Bank has emphasized that various security features have been incorporated into the euro notes that will help in recognizing a genuine banknote from a counterfeit eoru note. These features include:
- The raised print. Special printing processes give banknotes their unique feel. The ink should feel raised or thicker in the main image, the lettering and the value numerals on the front of the banknotes.
- Additional tactile marks for the visually impaired are included on the bottom edge of the €200 banknote and on the right-hand edge of the €500. The paper consists of pure cotton, which feels crisp and firm (not limp or waxy).
- When a banknote is held up against light: the watermark, the security thread and the see-through number will then be visible. All three features can be seen from the front and back of genuine banknotes.
- The security thread is embedded in the banknote paper. Holding the banknote against the light shows the thread as a dark stripe. The word ‘EURO’ and the value can be seen in tiny letters on the stripe. In the hologram one can see perforations which form the € symbol. One can also see small numbers showing the value.
- When the banknote is tilted, on the front one can see the shifting image on the hologram. On the back, one can see the glossy stripe (on the €5, €10 and €20 banknotes) or the colour-changing number (on the €50, €100, €200 and €500 banknotes), from purple to olive green or brown.
According to the ECB in the second half of 2007 a total of 296,000 counterfeit euro banknotes were withdrawn from circulation.