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EURion – Confessions of a Counterfeiter

EURION Did you know that those tiny yellow 20s on the back of a $20 dollar bill are actually arranged in a highly specific pattern?

EURion Constellation
They are placed in a EURion constellation pattern, and they actually have a very interesting anti-counterfeiting purpose.

I was trying to scan in an image of a $20 bill into my computer (for an article I’m working on, I swear!). When I used Adobe Photoshop to do this, I got this error message.

Apparently, computer programs and high resolution copy machines are designed to look for and prohibit the scanning, manipulation and printing of documents that contain the EURion symbol.


The EURion protection measure is also used on the Euro, Yuan, Franc, Yen, Schilling, and many other currencies.

In addition, you can see it on the new $5 bill that is currently being rolled out in the United States.


Crazy huh? You learn something new everyday.

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Comments (6)
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (17 votes, average: 4.59 out of 5)
6 Existing Comments
  1. Kai said:
    on March 26th at 11:42 pm

    easy to defeat…use a outdated version of adobe without the scan protection, easily find them online

    *poof* another security mechanism defeated even by a child

  2. R. Carr said:
    on March 28th at 06:31 am

    Scanning software has disallowed scanning (at least american) bills for a long time. I’m almost certain this disallow existed long before the new $20 with the pattern came out. If you looked into it, I’m sure the arrangement helps, or augments the security, but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t the first step.

  3. Bob said:
    on March 28th at 08:09 am

    What a brilliant government we have. For only $2 Trillion they can walk and almost chew gum at the same time. Good to see the War on Counterfeiting is going almost as well as the War on Drugs, The War on Iraq, The War on Peoples Minds, The War on Financial Terrorism and the War on Truth, Reality and Justice.

  4. jason said:
    on March 28th at 07:48 pm

    that is cool!

  5. Mike said:
    on April 10th at 05:40 am

    Hey Bob, don’t let the door hit you on the way out!

  6. Shawnette said:
    on April 30th at 09:46 pm

    The fact that money is continuously printed with updated anti-counterfeit methods, proves that it’s not counterfeit proof. Whoever has enough will and time…