What Happens if you Photocopy Money

Most probably, you are wondering whether you can photocopy money. Well, the answer is straightforward.

But even with this, there are certain factors you must have in mind even before you think of photocopying money.

Can you Photocopy Money?

Trying to Photocopy Money
Trying to Photocopy Money

Photocopying money is an illegal activity as money can only be printed by delegated institutions.

Photocopies of money should therefore not be printed. Printing money using modern ordinary printers is not possible. Printers are coded to reject printing out of currencies. Meaning even if you had the intention to photocopy money normal printers would prevent you from producing copies.

Can Printers Detect when Trying to Photocopy Money


Given that our currencies are denoted on paper, there was a great risk of people attempting to print out their own money. This would have a great economic currency and as such all the major currencies planted safeguards on the note produced to prevent them from being replicated by just anyone.

These encrypted codes on the cash prevent printers from being able to print out real money.

Additionally, most printers have built-in security features that can sense and prevent the production of counterfeit money.

What is EURion Constellation

A EURion constellation is a symbol donut-like in shape that is incorporated into documents for security purposes. They are used as safeguards to prevent high-level documents or security documents including cash from being photocopied.

This pattern was first discovered in 2002 by Markus Kuhn a security researcher while experimenting on 1 ten euro note.

The EURion constellation is made up of five rings located at strategic points on the notes.  Major currencies across the world use this safeguard to prevent the widespread of counterfeit money.

The EURion is what prevents printers from printing out notes and shutting down instead.

Euro Security Features
Euro Security Features
Security Features on the Dollar
Security Features on the Dollar

Consequences of Trying to Photocopy Money

If by chance you manage to find a printer that allows you to print out counterfeit bills, the action would still be illegal. Photocopying any currency all around the world is punishable with a jail term. In the USA creating and distributing counterfeit notes can land you a twenty-year jail term.


Creating a counterfeit by photocopying money may seem like the easy way out but there are grave consequences for doing so. Even if you manage to counterfeit money there are several ways of identifying fake money and once authorities have been involved getting arrested is only a matter of time. Therefore, do not attempt to photocopy money.

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