The term bill has several uses according to the context. The most common meaning is linked to paper money: that is, to the document printed by the authorities that is used as a legal means of payment.
For example: “To buy this car you will need many bills”, “Yesterday they gave me a fake ten peso bill”, “I don’t have a single bill: I don’t know how to buy food”.
This concept, in this sense, is the bill . It is the fiat money (based on trust) issued by the monetary authority of a country. These notes were created to replace or complement metallic coins, which are difficult to move and store in large quantities.
The first bill s were created in the 7th century in China. It was only in the 17th century that they were adopted on the European continent, and in the following century they spread throughout the world.
In the same way that it happened and continues to happen with metal coins, which were made in gold or silver in their time, banknotes also suffered the inevitable counterfeiting by those who do not want to obtain their own money by legal and fair means. With paper, counterfeiting proliferated and became easier, partly because it cost much less than metal coins.
In order to prevent counterfeiting or at least control it to minimize its spread, banks have been implementing various security measures for several decades, which have evolved over time to deal with the ingenious tactics of counterfeiters. It should be mentioned that marking the banknotes or altering their shape can also result in a penalty.
Currently, banknotes are made with elongated cotton fibers to achieve a paper that is very difficult to imitate; In addition, they apply printing techniques in several layers, and thus obtain watermarks, invisible ink and holograms, which allow to distinguish a counterfeit from a legitimate one. Let’s see below some of these measures in detail:
* Watermark: it is also called a watermark and consists of the printing of one or more images that are formed from different levels of thickness on the paper. In order to appreciate a watermark, it is necessary to look at the bill against the light;
* Whitener: to avoid counterfeiting with common paper, this technique is based on the use of paper without optical brighteners for part of the bill or for its entire surface. To detect it, it must be observed using an ultraviolet lamp;
* Reliefs: these can be seen by passing your fingers over the banknote;
* Optically variable ink: This material changes color according to the angle at which the light falls.
Apart from cotton, it is common for paper money to be made from textile fibers such as linen. Some countries make them in polymer to increase their resistance, adding a small transparent layer to them only a few millimeters thick, something that is especially difficult for less experienced criminals with few resources to counterfeit. This technique is applied in Mexico, Australia, Paraguay, Brazil, Guatemala, Hong Kong, Chile and New Zealand.
The concept of a ticket is also used to name the paper that grants the right to use a means of transport or to enter a venue and the ticket that documents participation in a lottery or raffle: “My parents gave me a plane ticket to get to know Paris ”, “ Tomorrow I’m going to buy the train ticket ”, “ Where is the ticket? The raffle will take place in a few minutes… ”.