Banknotes & Counterfeit Deterrence

Every country has legal restrictions on the reproduction of banknote images. The counterfeiting of currency is a crime, and while restrictions vary from country to country, in some countries, any reproduction of banknote images – even for artistic or advertising uses – is strictly forbidden. Even in countries that allow some limited use of banknote images, there are specific rules and requirements. This website will provide you with information about reproducing banknote images and links to country-specific websites for further guidance.

While the overall economic losses to society from counterfeiting of currency are generally limited, the victims who suffer the most harm are individuals and businesses, because no one reimburses those who accept counterfeit notes. Counterfeit currency can also undermine confidence in the payment system, making the public uncertain about accepting cash for transactions.

The Central Bank Counterfeit Deterrence Group (CBCDG) is responsible for this website. A counterfeit deterrence system (CDS) has been developed by the CBCDG to deter the use of personal computers, digital imaging equipment, and software in the counterfeiting of banknotes. The CDS has been voluntarily adopted by hardware and software manufacturers, and prevents personal computers and digital imaging tools from capturing or reproducing the image of a protected banknote. The technology does not have the capacity to track the use of a personal computer or digital imaging tools.

For information specific to a particular country or the banknote image you want to use, click on the appropriate region on the map or select the relevant country or currency from the list.



Select a region from the list or click on the map below




BGN - Bulgarian lev Bulgaria Bulgarian

Official bank or department:

Contact information:


Bulgarian National Bank

Issue and Cash Operations Directorate
Cash Center of the BNB
Ul. Michail Tenev 10

Fax: +359 29 145 1054

Notes in circulation

Notes and coins reproduction

General information about the reproduction of banknotes:

Reproduction of a Bulgarian banknote means the making of any tangible or intangible image which uses all or part of a Bulgarian banknote according to the characteristics as specified in the official publications and on the website of the Bulgarian National Bank. Such an image may resemble or give the general impression of a Bulgarian banknote, irrespective of:

  1. the size of the image;
  2. the materials or techniques used to produce the reproduction;
  3. whether elements or illustrations have been added to the image which do not originate from banknotes;
  4. whether the design of the banknote, in terms of letters, digits or symbols, for example, has been altered.

The requirements for reproduction apply to all issues of Bulgarian banknotes.

The Bulgarian National Bank affirms that the currency is an important symbol of value in Bulgaria and that people may wish to reproduce images of the banknotes for various purposes. The Bank gives its consent for such reproduction only if:

  • there is no risk that the final product of reproduction could be mistaken for a real banknote and be misused by counterfeiters;
  • the purpose of the reproduction will not have a negative impact on the dignity and importance of the banknote in the eyes of the general public.

To eliminate the risk of potential civil and criminal violations, the written permission of the Bulgarian National Bank should be sought and granted before the reproduction of any image.

The Bulgarian National Bank provides its consent only in writing.

Obtaining permission from the Bulgarian National Bank for the reproduction of images of banknotes
Anyone who wishes to reproduce a Bulgarian banknote should file an application with the Bulgarian National Bank. A single copy of the application should be made using a sample form, Appendix No 1 of Ordinance No 18 on the Control over Quality of Banknotes and Coins in Cash Circulation.

The written permission of the Bulgarian National Bank for the reproduction of a Bulgarian banknote entitles the person to whom permission is given to reproduce such a banknote, and to use the copy only for the purpose stated in the application.

No application for the reproduction of a Bulgarian banknote is required where the Bulgarian National Bank:

  • has organised a press conference or other public events where Bulgarian banknotes are presented or shown;
  • has commissioned or granted consent for a report or other material designated for third parties which features Bulgarian banknotes, or
  • prepares media publications, reports or other journalistic materials designated for third parties which feature Bulgarian banknotes.

In such cases the requirements for the reproduction of Bulgarian banknotes cited in Ordinance No 18 should be observed.

Reproduction in printed media:

The reproduction of a Bulgarian banknote should meet at least one of the following requirements:

  1. The size of one-sided reproductions of a Bulgarian banknote should be no less than 125% of both the length and width or no more than 75% of both the length and width of the respective Bulgarian banknote.
  2. The size of two-sided reproductions of a Bulgarian banknote should be no less than 200% of both the length and width or no more than 50% of both the length and width of the respective Bulgarian banknote.
  3. In the case of reproductions of individual design elements of a Bulgarian banknote, these elements should not be depicted on a background resembling the banknote.
  4. In the case of one-sided reproductions depicting a part of the front or reverse side of a Bulgarian banknote, such a part should be smaller than one-third of the front or reverse side of the original banknote.
  5. In the case of one-sided or two-sided reproductions of a Bulgarian banknote which correspond to the size of the original banknote, the reproduction should be made of a material which is clearly different from paper and looks distinctly different from the material used for the banknote.

Reproduction in electronic media:

In the case of intangible reproductions made available electronically on websites, by wire or by wireless means, allowing third parties to access these intangible reproductions at a time and from a place individually chosen by them, the reproduction should contain the word SPECIMEN printed diagonally across the reproduction in TimokB font or a font similar to TimokB font. The length of the word SPECIMEN should be at least 75% of the length of the reproduction and the height of the word SPECIMEN should be at least 15% of the width of the reproduction, while the word SPECIMEN should be printed in a non-transparent (opaque) colour contrasting with the dominant colour of the respective Bulgarian banknote. The resolution of the electronic reproduction in its original size should not exceed 72 dpi.