Play Money

Every morning after I drop my daughter off at school, I pop into Second Cup for my A.M. caffeine jolt. It was there at my local favourite coffee shop that I first noticed that a majority of retailers are now equipped with those paper currency scanners to detect for counterfeit bills.

Several weeks ago, I was in line waiting to pay for groceries at No Frills, when the lady in front of me was told that the $10 bill she had just handed the cashier was counterfeit.

Those little currency scanners are as common as the Interac keypads at most cash registers these days. I find that oddly disturbing. At the same time I’m not deluded into thinking that Toronto is totally devoid of crime, but its scary to think that retailers have to resort to scanning every bill that passes into their hands.

Unless you have a toonie in your wallet to pay for your cup of coffee, you can count on the fact that the $5, $10, or $20 bill ($100 bills don’t find their way into my purse often these days) you pull out will get passed through the machine before your lips touch the fresh brewed java.

1 Comment so far

  1. lorraine (unregistered) on February 28th, 2005 @ 4:32 pm

    When I was a cashier, maybe 5-6 years ago now, we used comparitively unscientific methods such as making sure the green dots could be scratched off, and examining the bill to see if it had enough detail. Perhaps the retailers just want a quick way to be %100 sure of getting valid currency.

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