UK wants to combine cash recycling, currency authentication

Feb. 27, 2013

As the efficiency of cash recycling increases in popularity across Europe, the Bank of England is looking to get on board. The recycling process would allow cash paid into a shop to be deposited to a nearby ATM where it is recycled for local reuse — without removal first to a cash center for counting, authentication and fitness assessment.

However, without that removal it becomes hugely important to ensure that the ATM network can sort fit, unfit and counterfeit notes. So, as a precursor to the introduction of cash recycling, the U.K.'s Strategic Cash Group will commence a public consultation for a new policy on banknote authentication, said a report by the Economic Voice.

Chris Salmon, executive director for banking services and chief cashier for the Bank of England, commented on the launch of the public consultation for the "Code of Conduct for the Authentication of Machine-Dispensed Banknotes":

"The public need to trust that the banknotes they receive are genuine," Salmon said. "This starts with the sophisticated security features which are built into the banknotes themselves. But it also depends on these security features forming the basis for authentication and handling practices throughout the cash cycle.

"The 'Code of Conduct for the Authentication of Machine-Dispensed Banknotes' will deliver robust local recycling by addressing the change in how, where and by whom a banknote may be authenticated.

"SCG's aim is to put the code in place later this year. It will be based on notes distributed via ATMs and self-service checkouts being authenticated by machines which have been successfully tested by the Bank of England.

With the code in place, the U.K. banking system will have a robust policy for local recycling and "a new pillar" to support continuing confidence in the nation's currency. Salmon said.

The consultation will run through May 20. A formal response will be published in July 2013, alongside the final code.

Read more about vault cash and cash management.

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