The U.S. Treasury has unveiled a new $100 dollar bill that officials say is key to staying ahead of counterfeiters.
Speaking at the new C-note’s debut, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said it’s a challenge to guard against counterfeiting as technology becomes more sophisticated and more dollars flow overseas.
Staying ahead of bogus bills is a job that has become “more complex in recent years as technology advances and U.S. dollar flows expand and increase,” Bernanke said. He said as many as two-thirds of all $100 bills circulate outside the United States.
The Treasury has incorporated two advanced and easy-to-use security features which offer a simple and subtle way to verify that a note is real:
– 3-D Security Ribbon: A blue ribbon on the front of the $100 note with images of bells and 100s. Tilt the note back and forth while focusing on the blue ribbon. You will see the bells change to 100s as they move. When you tilt the note back and forth, the bells and 100s move side to side. If you tilt it side to side, they move up and down. The ribbon is woven into the paper, not printed on it.
– Bell in the Inkwell: A color-shifting bell, inside a copper inkwell, on the front of the note. The inkwell and bell are both copper until you move the $100 note. Tilt it to see the bell change from copper to green, an effect which makes the bell seem to appear and disappear within the inkwell.
Three highly effective security features from the old design were retained in the new $100 note:
– Portrait Watermark: Hold the note to light and look for a faint image of Benjamin Franklin around the blank space to the right of the portrait. The image is visible from either side of the note.
– Security Thread: Hold the note to light to see an embedded thread that runs vertically to the left of the portrait. The letters USA and the numeral 100 appear in an alternating pattern and are visible along the thread from both sides of the note. The thread glows pink when illuminated by ultraviolet light.
– Color-Shifting 100: Tilt the note to see the numeral 100 in the lower right corner of the front of the note shift from copper to green.
The new bills goes into circulation on Feb. 10, 2011.