Intelligent banknote neutralisation system

An Intelligent Banknote Neutralisation System (IBNS) is a security system which protects valuables against unauthorised access to its contents by rendering it unusable by marking all the cash as stolen by a degradation agent when an attempted attack on the system is detected. Ink is a popular agent, which functions by staining cash with a permanent dye. Such marked money is highly conspicuous and cannot be readily used. More recently, a bonding agent (glue) was released as an alternative degradation agent.

Well-neutralised banknotes cannot be brought back into circulation easily. They can be linked to the crime scene and restricted procedures are in place to exchange them at the financial institution. This makes stealing neutralised banknotes uneconomical and impractical. The IBNS removes the anticipated reward of the crime and increases the risk of being caught. This not only foils the theft but acts as a deterrent against further attacks.


In Europe the design of intelligent systems to protect valuables began in 1980. The overall goal was to create a secure system to provide additional security for Cash-in-transit. The very first IBNS prototype using coloured smoke as neutralisation agent was invented by Spinnaker International Ltd in 1982. This made use of very lightweight and simple to use containers. In 1990, the first case of safety ink as a neutralizing agent was accepted to be used in soft-skinned vehicles.

At the same time in Sweden IBNS systems manufactured by Spinnaker, were being used in non-armoured and partially armoured vehicles, demonstrating that this was a viable alternative to cash transportation with armoured trucks. The Swedish market decided to progress with IBNS boxes for cash transport.

In 1991 France changed its regulations to allow the use of IBNS in soft-skinned vehicles. The French CIT company VALTIS was the first to implement such a system to service three regional banks. In 2002, Banque de France implemented an international procedure to treat and exchange neutralized banknotes for CIT professionals. In 2003, the European Central Bank made a decision that defined the process and cost of exchanging neutralized Euro Banknotes among all National Central Banks in Europe.[1] In 2005, Banque de France implemented a special procedure regarding the treatment of stained banknotes deposited by private persons. In 2007, Sweden implemented a national regulation making the use of IBNS by CIT obligatory. The same year, the Belgian government also implemented a national regulation imposing the use of IBNS for Cash-in-transit.

In 2010, the European Commission finalized a European regulation to harmonize cross-border cash transportation by road. The use of non-armoured vehicles in combination with IBNS is one of two accepted methods of transportation.[2]


The concept of an IBNS is based upon the notion that criminals seek to maximize their reward while minimizing the potential cost of the crime.[3] Intelligent Banknote Neutralisation Systems remove the anticipated reward of the crime and increase the risk of being caught. Reducing the reward of the crime is done by permanently marking the cash as stolen with an indelible security ink or bonding agent. Tracers and markers added to the ink or bonding agent provide forensic evidence linking the criminal to the crime scene, increasing the risk of being caught.

IBNS focuses on using technology to protect people, valuables and equipment whilst minimizing the use of weapons and armoured vehicles.


IBNS technology is typically found protecting cash inside ATMs; in retail establishments and vending machines and by the cash in transit industry to protect cash in the public space.

Legislation and regulations

The use of IBNS is usually regulated by the presence or absence of a legal structure (legislation and regulations) as well as the legal conditions applying to the private security sector.

The following countries allow neutralisation of national banknotes by the National Central Bank:

These countries forbid neutralising of national banknotes by legal regulation or internal regulation by the National Central Bank: Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Egypt, Argentina, Chile, Paraguay and others.


Providers of IBNS technology include Spinnaker International Ltd, StrongPoint Cash Security, Villiger, Gehrer, Cennox (formerly 3Si Europe), Mactwin Security (, SmartStain and Oberthur Cash Protection. Some are members of the IBNS manufacturers association, European Intelligent Cash Protection Association - EURICPA.

See also


  1. , DECISION OF THE EUROPEAN CENTRAL BANK of 20 March 2003 on the denominations, specifications, reproduction, exchange and withdrawal of euro banknotes. EUROPEAN CENTRAL BANK.
  2. , Commission proposal for an EU Regulation to facilitate professional cross-border transportation of euro cash by road. European Commission
  3. "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-09-28. Retrieved 2011-08-18.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link), Barthe, Emmanuel. Crime Prevention Publicity Campaigns. U.S. Department of Justice. 2006, p.9.
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.