Fake £20 notes are being reported as being passed in the Crewe area.
Businesses throughout Cheshire are advised to increase checks on notes used to purchase items.
A spokesperson for Cheshire police said: “We are also urging shoppers to remain vigilant and to report any suspected fake notes to police. Holding onto counterfeit notes is a criminal offence so if you discover that you are in possession of a fake note, please do not try and use it or pass it on. The advice is to hand it into your nearest bank.”
Cheshire Police released a checklist for spotting a fake note:
• Be vigilant and use a UV marker pen on notes – a genuine note does not absorb the liquid from a UV marker pen.
• Check for raised print – in particular across the bit that says ‘Bank of England’.
• Check the metallic thread – this should appear as a continuous line if held up to the light.
• Check the watermark.
• Check the print quality – the images should be sharp and not blurred.
• Check the hologram.
• Check with ultra-violet light – if you put the note under a UV light its value appears in bright red and green numbers while the rest of the note remains dull.
• Check the micro-lettering under the Queen’s head as this will give the value of the note written in letters and numerals.
Anyone with any information in relation to fake banknotes is urged to contact police immediately on 101. Alternatively, information can also be given anonymously by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.