BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WBKO) -- Buyer and businesses beware.
Counterfeit currency is being circulated throughout the Bowling Green area.
"It seems like whenever we see one, we'll see multiple ones of the same kind," Bowling Green Police Department's, Ronnie Ward, said.
The B.G.P.D. is currently investigating a string of counterfeit cases.
"Just in this most recent wave, we've taken several reports in the last week or so that have been 20's. But, we have seen denominations of all types. We've seen 1's, 5's, 100's, and 50's that are counterfeit as well," Ward said.
Usually the process begins with a counterfeit detector pen, where businesses will mark the bill to see if the ink changes colors. However, investigators say this may not be the most accurate test.
"It is designed to test the pH level in the paper. It can only tell you if it is not legitimate paper," one Fraud Investigator said.
Many businesses also use detector machines which will throw out any suspicious bills.
"But, we have them from banks, too, that businesses will deposit money and then the bank will call us and say they have a counterfeit bill. So, it can be anywhere. It just seems like it's more noticeable at consumer type businesses," Ward said.
Although there are many signs to look for, there is only one way to be certain.
"The only way to determine that, for sure, is to send that bill off to the secret service, who can then research it, test it, and tell you whether or not it is a legitimate bill," one Investigator said.
Officials say no fake bill is too small to investigate.
"Once the Secret Service gets involved, it then becomes a federal offense. It depends on, then, what federal court says about what the punishments are. But, it is very serious and the U.S. Government takes it very seriously," Ward said.