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28 January 2022 General
Eurobiljet en loep

A total of 26,100 counterfeit euro banknotes were withdrawn from circulation in the Netherlands in 2021, roughly the same number as in 2020. Worldwide, a total of 347,000 counterfeit euro banknotes were detected, a decrease of 25% compared to 2020.

Counterfeit euro banknotes recovered from circulation

 

2016

2017

2018

2019

2020

2021

 

Netherlands  

47.200

43.200

38.900

38.900

25.500

26.100

 

Worldwide*

684.000  

694.000  

563.000  

559.000  

460.000  

347.000

 

*Source: European Central Bank.

Compared to the 28 billion genuine euro banknotes in circulation, the likelihood of receiving a counterfeit note is small. The €50 note is still the most frequently found counterfeit note in the Netherlands, but its number has been steadily declining since 2015 (see the orange line in the graph). In the last two years, this decline has coincided with the decreasing use of cash at points of sale due to COVID-19.

Counterfeits per denomination in the Netherlands

Vervalsingen per coupure (in Nederland)

The number of counterfeit €20 notes increased slightly in 2021. The same applies to the number of counterfeit €200 notes, which are low-quality reproductions that are easy to detect as they have no security features, or only very poor imitations of them. This underlines the importance of checking banknotes upon acceptance. Checking a banknote's authenticity is quick and easy, for example by looking at its watermark and the hologram. For more information on how to check whether banknotes are genuine, go to our web page. Careful checks ensure that suspect banknotes are promptly detected, preventing criminals from paying with counterfeits and leaving recipients with a financial loss. Retailers increasingly check euro banknotes using detection devices certified by the European Central Bank. 

For more information, please contact Tobias Oudejans at +31 20 524 3100 or +31 6 524 961.

Form for submitting suspicious euro banknotes

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