Branch automation vendors operating in India stand to gain from new central bank proposals to counter a recent surge in the circulation of counterfeit bank notes.
A high level group set up by the Reserve Bank of India on currency distribution has recommended the installation of note sorting machines at all bank branches and the introduction of secure 'cassette swapping' systems at ATMs.
The group was formed following the discovery of a counterfeit note ring operating out of a nationalised bank, where 75,000 fake notes were discovered with a face value of Rs.4.02 crore ($1 million).
The RBI says the absolute number of counterfeit notes detected at bank branches and the Reserve Bank offices increased threefold from 102,687 in 2000-01 to 398,111 in 2008-09. The number of counterfeits detected per million pieces in the banking channel has ranged from three to eight.
Alongside the introduction of note sorting machines and ATM cassettes, the RBI says banks should upgrade security and surveillance measures at vaults through the use of biometric access control and CCTV monitoring.
The group also recommended that RBI "take initiatives in promoting use of cards and electronic means of payment" as an alternative to paper currency.