The South African Reserve Bank (SARB) is warning the public against accepting banknotes stained with traces of blue and green ink. Looters targeted over 1,400 ATMs during last week’s violence in parts of the country.
The Reserve Bank said it noticed an increase in the circulation of dye-stained notes in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng – which were the hardest-hit areas.
ATMs hold cash in special containers protected with dye-stain technology which is activated when the container is broken open. Once activated, the cash is stained with a green and blue dye, thus defacing the notes, rendering them unusable as currency.
The South African Reserve Bank has warned that those in possession of dye-stained banknotes make themselves suspects of a criminal investigation.
The central bank has also urged South Africans who were given or unknowingly accepted such notes to take them to their nearest police station immediately.