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Wherever and whenever there is a currency reform, there is fraud. Tricksters swindled innocuous people out of their money when the United Kingdom switched to decimalization; the same happened when Germany introduced new banknotes in the 1980s.
To combat fraud and counterfeiting, EU governments have set up Europol, a transnational police force. However, the European police force is small. By the year 2003, Europol will have approximately 350 officers.
The euro notes also come with a number of security markings, which affect the look and feel of the banknotes. There is raised print, a special security thread and watermark which is visible under a strong light, and a hologram which changes image when tilted. The notes also have a brilliant iridescent strip that changes colour when tilted. The European Central Bank is hoping that these security features will prevent forgeries from taking advantage of people's unfamiliarity with the new currency. Shop assistants are being trained to recognise the new notes.
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