Identifying Genuine Currency

Our currency notes and coins have various advanced security features, including visually recognisable, machine-readable and covert features, to minimise the risk of counterfeiting. While the number of counterfeit Singapore currency is very low, the public is advised to be vigilant and to familiarise themselves with the key security features of genuine currency.

Identifying Genuine Notes

Incorporated in each currency note is a multiplicity of security features which makes counterfeiting of the notes extremely difficult. To determine if a currency note is genuine, users should perform the ‘Look-Tilt-Feel’ method as shown in the videos below. If in doubt, approach MAS to verify the authenticity of the note.

Key Security Features of Singapore Paper Notes

Key Security Features of Singapore Polymer Notes

More information on the security features of Singapore currency notes can be found via the links below.

Identifying Genuine Coins

Genuine coins typically have sharp and defined relief of the design, milled edges, lettering and characters on both sides of the coin. The weight of the genuine coin is also within the standard tolerance of the gazetted coin specifications.

For the Third Series $1 coin, visual security features include:

  • Laser mark micro-engraving. The orchid-shaped laser mark on a genuine coin will show a dense micro-pattern of circles under magnification.
  • Bi-metallic composition. Attempts to replicate bi-metallic coins are usually made using paint instead of two different types of metal

Counterfeit Coins

Here are some general indicators that a coin may be a counterfeit:
  • Milling or edge patterns are uneven, poorly defined and worn off.
  • The relief of the design, lettering and characters are not distinct, sharp or well defined.
  • Surface of the coin has many pitmarks and appears very porous.
  • Diameter, thickness and weight of fake coins are different from the gazetted coin specifications.
  • The orientation of the obverse and reverse designs is not aligned.

When in possession of suspected counterfeit currency, one should:

  • Refrain from using the currency as circulating counterfeit currency is a criminal offence under the Penal Code.
  • Take down the particulars of the person or name of the retailer who dispensed the counterfeit currency.
  • Keep the currency in the condition as it was received. If it is a note, do not cut it or write anything on it.
  • Approach MAS to verify the authenticity of the currency.
  • If the currency is established as a counterfeit, lodge a report at any police station.