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High-Tech $100 Bill Officially in Circulation

The new $100 banknote has additional security features aimed at thwarting sophisticated counterfeiters.


Counterfeiters will have their work cut out for them if they try to copy the new “Benjamins” which went into circulation on Tuesday.

The redesigned $100 bill uses a paper blend that would be difficult to reproduce even for the most skilled forger.

Other security features include a blue three-dimensional security ribbon and a bell and inkwell logo that changes color when tilted. The number 100 in the right-hand corner also shifts from copper to green.

“The new design incorporates security features that make it easier to authenticate, but harder to replicate," Federal Reserve Board Governor Jerome Powell said in a statement.

At least, that’s the hope.

The new note retains some of the features of the old bill, such as the watermark and embedded security thread that glows pink under ultraviolet light.

And, of course, the image of American Founding Father Benjamin Franklin is still there, although his collar has a bit more texture on the new note and part of the Declaration of Independence has been added to his left shoulder.

There are about $900 billion in $100 notes washing around the global economy, with half to two-thirds outside the United States. Of the $1.1 trillion of US money in circulation, less than 0.01 percent are estimated to be fake bills.

The old $100 notes will remain legal as banks gradually them with the new version.