Sunday 9 May 2021

Learn to check your cash and avoid scams

The Banco de Costa Rica (BCR) is recommending its clients and the general public to be alert, to check their cash to avoid falling victims of scams, receiving false bills when getting change back.

Among the recommendations by the State bank:

  • Do not lose sight of the money you give when you make a payment in a retail store or on the street so it doesn’t get switched for a fake note.
  • If you pay with a single note, try to memorize the last 4 digits of the series, this will give you more credibility in case you have to make a claim or complaint to the person who is telling you that it is false.
  • Count and verify the amount, when you withdraw cash from an ATM.

In addition, the Banco Central de Costa Rica (BCCR) – Central Bank – lists the steps to follow to verify the authenticity of a note:

  • Touch: the character’s face and the amount of the note are sensitive elements to touch.
  • Look: the watermark shows the face of the character and the perfect record of the note amount.
  • Turn:  the map of Costa Rica changes color.
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Additionally, it is recommended not to make transactions with cash in places with in low visibility or low light.

The BCR has several filters that are activated at the moment the cash is received from the customer at the branch. To begin with, when the cashier receives the cash, he.she reviews it in front of the customer and, in the event of finding a false note, seizes it and gives the customer a confiscation certificate.

In addition, the bank has specialized equipment to detect that verify the authenticity of notes whether they are colones, U.S. dollars or euros.

The bank says it has invested more than US$5 million dollars in high-tech equipment to assure 100% of the notes to the public meet the necessary security features.

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To avoid other types of bank/money fraud, the bank assures its clients it never requests confidential information such as passwords, pins, etc, by telephone or email.


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We strive for accuracy in its reports. But if you see something that doesn’t look right, send us an email. The Q reviews and updates its content regularly to ensure it’s accuracy.

"Rico" is the crazy mind behind the Q media websites, a series of online magazines where everything is Q! In these times of new normal, stay at home. Stay safe. Stay healthy.

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