Retailers with self-fill cash machines in their stores may have to install anti-forgery equipment.

The Payments Council is currently consulting on a ‘Code of Conduct for the Authentication of Machine-Dispensed Banknotes’ which means retailers would have to authenticate all notes that are recycled through self-fill ATMs through a note checker that has been approved by the Bank of England.

Jai Singh of Singh’s Premier in Sheffield questioned the need for a code on the issue. “Retailers should take personal responsibility for checking on potentially fake notes rather than being forced to do so,” he said. “I’ve had a self-fill cash machine for five years and I’ve never had a fraudulent note in it because my staff and I check all notes before they even reach the till. Why should I have to pay for an extra piece of equipment?”

But the consultation was welcomed by payment services provider PayPoint, which believes it will help protect retailers from threat of fraudulent notes. A spokesman said: “The use of counterfeit banknotes is growing rapidly and independent retailers are seen as an easy target by the crooks. Having a note-checker on the counter and being seen to use it will act as an effective deterrent for anyone trying to pass fake notes at your shop.”

The consultation is set to finish on May 20 with the Payments Council hoping to publish the final code by summer 2013.