The Federal Reserve is making it rain new hundred dollar bills on October 8, 2013. They're more colorful, more secure, and easier to authenticate, but harder to replicate. Here's everything that's changed.
Most of the benjamins you see today were designed way back in 1996. Sounds pretty old, right? An overhauled hundo was supposed to enter into circulation in February of 2011, but production was shut down a few months prior because of a manufacturing flaw that revealed a blank space in the note when a crease formed. But the latest batch of seems to be a big improvement.
If you were contemplating going into the counterfeiting business, you'll be talked out of it by the time you see how the Treasury Department has booby-trapped this bill. It looks nearly impossible to duplicate. You can take an interactive tour of the new C-notes here, but we went ahead and did a breakdown of the features for you:
A hologram-like 3D security ribbon woven into the paper has bell icons that change to 100s when you move the bill.
When you hold the note steady, both the inkwell and the bell inside of it are copper. Move the bill, and the bell turns green.
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To the right of the big portrait of Ben Franklin is a smaller, faint portrait watermark. You can detect it when you hold the bill up to light.
A security thread imprinted with USAs and 100s is located to the left of big Ben's head. It can be detected when it's put under a UV light.
The numeral 100 in the bottom right-hand corner of the front of the note changes from copper to green when you move it.
Just in case you don't know what kind of cash you're handling, there's now a giant gold 100 on the back of the bill.
There are a couple of micro-printed words located on the hundred. "The United States of America" sits on ol' Ben's collar, "USA 100" surrounds the portrait watermark, and "One hundred USA" appears next to a golden quill.
Franklin's jacket feels rough to the touch; there's raised printing all over the bill so it feels like a legit piece of officially issued currency. And so that it's harder to copy.