Funny Money: Authorities Sound the Alarm Over Counterfeit Cash - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Funny Money: Authorities Sound the Alarm Over Counterfeit Cash in Wicomico County

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SALISBURY, Md.- November may barely be under way, but the holiday shopping season is already upon us. And amid the rush to snag those perfect gifts, authorities in Wicomico County are sounding the alarm over counterfeit money.

Monday at the Centre at Salisbury, it was all about counterfeit currency awareness, teaching merchants how to spot the real, from the fake.

When it comes to cash, Special Agent Gary Eitel with the United States Secret Service said it is important for merchants to know the difference.

"By educating the public and businesses, we can actually put a stop to all the counterfeiting that goes on, on a local level," he said.

Hilary Thompson is the general manager at Charming Charlie inside The Centre at Salisbury mall. She has never had any issues with counterfeit money inside her store, and she wants it to stay that way.

"There's always a chance, and when you have so many people coming in and you have so many transactions going on, there's always that chance that it's going to happen but our biggest way to combat that is through the awareness," Thompson noted.

It is not just retail stores that have their eye out.

Around Christmas time last year, Chic-fil-A general manager Kyle Bartz SAID people tried to pass fake bills at his restaurant on more than one occasion.

"Unfortunately, it was busy and one of them still was taken and we didn't notice it until the deposit," he explained.

According to Capt. Scott Kolb of the Salisbury Police Department, crooks try to take advantage of those busy times, especially around the Holidays.

"Everybody's in a hurry," remarked Kolb. "They don't take the extra time. So, if we can get ahead of this now and let people know what we're looking for, hopefully that will deter this type of activity."

Experts say the quickest way to spot counterfeit cash is to look for the color-shift ink and check the watermark.

If you do not see those things, Eitel advises that you call police.

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