1. Finding a phony paper or polymer note
Polymer ₤ 5 and ₤ 10 notes have totally changed paper notes considering that 2018, while this year has seen the release of polymer ₤ 20 notes into circulation.
All notes will be polymer by the end of 2021, when the Bank of England expects to have released a ₤ 50 polymer note.
However with paper notes still in circulation and polymer notes having extra security features to make them harder to fake, what should you be looking out for to identify if your cash is phony?
First, let's take a look at how to spot a phony paper banknote. If you're particularly interested in spotting phony plastic notes, scroll straight to point 8.
These are printed on a special product, so make sure you examine how the paper feels.
A genuine banknote has a cloth-like feel, while a phony note will feel more like standard paper.
₤ 50 banknote (Image: Bank of England).
2. Raised print.
Run your finger across the paper note and if it's authentic, you need to have the ability to feel the raised print on locations such as the words 'Bank of England' on the front.
If it's a fake, the note is not likely to have a textured feel to it and will feel flat all over.
3. Check the metal thread.
A metal thread is embedded in every paper banknote.
This looks like silver dashes on the back of paper ₤ 20 and ₤ 50 notes (see more info on identifying fake paper ₤ 20 notes on this Bank of England page).
The thread is woven through the paper-- not simply printed on-- so when you hold it approximately the light it should look like a constant dark line.
This looks like intense green dashes on the front of ₤ 50 notes.
Each dash is really a window which contains images of the '₤' symbol and the number '50'. When the note is tilted from side to side, the images move up and down.
When the note is slanted Fake money that looks and feels real up and down, the images move from side to side and the number '50' and '₤' sign swap locations.
4. Examine the watermark.
If you hold a genuine note approximately the light, you must see a picture of the Queen's picture.
Nevertheless, if you can still see the watermark when the note is flat and not held up to the light, it's most likely to be a dodgy note.
5. Examine the print quality.
The printed lines and colours on real notes will be detailed and sharp and totally free from spots or blurred edges. So ensure you check the information carefully.
If the quality is poor or messy, you have actually got yourself a fake!
6. Check under ultra-violet light.
This isn't so helpful if you have actually just been provided a banknote in a shop, but if you're truly determined to discover out whether your note is fake or authentic, put it under ultra-violet light.
If it's the real deal, its worth will appear in intense red and green numbers while the background will be dull on the other hand.
The paper ₤ 20 and ₤ 50 notes also have intense red and green flecks arbitrarily spread over the front and back of the note.
7. Use a magnifying glass.
Use a magnifying glass to look closely at the lettering beneath the Queen's portrait. On a genuine note, decorative swirls spell out the value of the note in little letters and characters.