Rash of fake £20 notes leave cabbies out of pocket

A rash of occurrences where cabbies are being handed fake £20 notes has left many drivers out of pocket.

In what seems to be a regular occurrence, taxi drivers in London are being hailed around the Euston, Kings Cross or Blackfriars area, and then told to drive a relatively short distance. 

The cost of the journey is usually around the £5 mark. The driver is then handed a seemingly real £20 note, only to find that when attempting to use the money, or pay it into the bank, the note is then identified as counterfeit.

The individuals involved have been described as of Black and Asian appearance, in their late teens or early 20s, and quite chatty, talking to drivers about The Knowledge and whether taxi drivers still have to do it, there is usually a group of 4 or 5 of them.

TaxiPoint spoke to a representative at HSBC Bank regarding how to identify a counterfeit note.

The representative at the branch said: "first of all check the quality of the paper, this is usually an easy giveaway as to whether a note is a forgery."

She then added: "look at the colouring of the note, as well as the print quality and check for the watermark too."

The representative finally added:"it is always worth purchasing an ultra-violet marker to identity a forged note."

According to the representative at HSBC, the majority of forgeries seem to be £20 notes, and on occasion £50 notes. £10 and £5 notes are more difficult to forge due to the materials used in producing the notes. 

The general principle is that if there is any doubt about the note, do not accept it, ask for card payment.