Can you spot fake money? LPD has some tips so you won't be fooled

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LINCOLN, Neb. – Lincoln police said they've seen 44 forged money cases already in 2018.

"Counterfeit bills are a problem here in Lincoln," said Lincoln Police Investigator Brad Hulse.

Whether it's a $20 or $100, investigator Brad Hulse said they're seeing a lot of fakes in most denominations. And, people can be vulnerable to counterfeits pretty much anywhere besides banks.

"Anytime you're handling money, either you get it or receive it or whether it's through a retail or buy something on Facebook, Craigslist, whatever the case may be always look at those bills,"

Some of the main things to check for are the numbers in the bottom right hand corner. They have color shifting ink.

"It's going to shift from green to gold... when you tilt it slightly, shift it," said Hulse about a real $20 bill.

But $5 bills don't have the color shifting ink. So, they are a little trickier.

If you know what to look for you won't be fooled.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Engraving and Printing, the $5 bill has two water marks, which are small images that can only be seen when held up to light.

There is one in the right hand ring of stars, and one in the left hand ring. A security thread is also visible when held to light near the middle of the bill.

For any bill, Hulse said to also feel it. If it's stiff or really soft, it's probably fake.

"These are your prop money bills. These one's here, somebody probably did it on a home printer," said Hulse.

One dollar bills aren't really cost-effective to fake, so 20s, 50s and 100s are most commonly forged, but they're also easier to spot.

"The Asian writing, the tracks, the Asian writing on the back, and tracks across the back," said Hulse about a clearly fake $20 bill.

Even though you can encounter fakes anywhere, Hulse said one of the most common places times people are fooled is when they buy things through social media.

"If somebody hands you fake money, probably the best thing you could do is just say this money doesn't look real I'm not going to accept it," said Hulse.

Hulse said when you don't accept the bill, just leave and avoid altercation. The best thing you can do is take down the license plate and then report the interaction to LPD.