Business Technology

No, Zeti’s signature isn’t why your RM1 note gets rejected. Distributors tell us the truth

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Earlier this year, we wrote an article that investigates why we can’t use coins in parking machines. And the simple answer to that would be… fussy car park operators! But if you wanna know the full answer to that, just click here.

But let’s be real. Parking and vending machines don’t only give you problems with coins. Sometimes you have to insert notes two to four times (or even more!) into the note slots before the machines accept your notes. Why like that one ah?

A twitter user named Aina (@nurfitriainii) may have just found out why. In her tweet, she pointed out that it’s probably because the ringgit notes did not have former Bank Negara’s governor, Zeti Aziz’s signature.

She told us that she had realised this when she was about to buy a drink from a vending machine at Taman Botani, Putrajaya.

“But then I couldn’t insert my money and there was this one guy who works there told me that the machine won’t accept bank notes with Muhammad bin Ibrahim signature. So I tested it out and it was proven to be true.” – Aina told CILISOS.

Her tweet went viral and was even featured on some viral pages. In light of this mindblowing discovery, CILISOS Real Fake Malaysia News decided to actually find out who makes these parking machines, and ask them to settle this.


Actually… your ringgits are not rejected because of a signature.

So we got in touch with the guys who supply those machines.. a company called Evoxen (which apparently stands for Evolutionary, Evolution, Enclosed. Wahlau) and here’s what they told us.

“Technically the note/bill acceptor can’t recognize signatures. It only validates based on our bank Negara bills security requirements.” – Francis Pang of Evoxen told CILISOS.

Um ok ok… so does that mean the signature isn’t a security requirement or…..?

Before we delve in deeper, let’s focus on one important part of the machine itself – the Note Acceptor… which yes, is that thing you always scream at whenever you pay parking. According to Aina, who was a software engineer, the Note Acceptor has two functions: to read and remember the design of the notes. But how???

Kevin Ong of Amano, another Parking machine distributor, told us that the machines he supplies can identify notes based on the notes’ physical attributes like shape, size and design but NOT the signature. Vin Lee of MaxPark specifically added that note acceptors are able to read notes based on four criteria:

  • Size, based on Four edges of the notes
  • Thickness of the notes
  • Colours of the notes
  • Magnetic pattern on the notes’ surface which can’t be seen with bare eyes

Actually you can see those magnetic patterns under ultraviolet lights like this which those money changers always use:

Vin also told us that note acceptors are able to recognise which ringgit is which value thanks to a series of test runs involving… 100 notes (of a kind)! And that’s not all. In these test runs, the notes will be inserted in four ways: up, down, top and bottom.

Yeap, just like the way you flip your note when the machines reject your notes.

Yeap, the same way you flip the notes every time they get rejected by those machines. 🙁

“(As a result) There will be an average mixture of Crispy New Notes, Normal Notes & Old Notes. There are possibilities that certain direction may not be perfect during the teaching (test run) process and, hence, you need to flip it to another end.” – Vin told CILISOS.

Just so you know, this note testing isn’t conducted here in Malaysia. According to Vin, parking machine’s note acceptors are normally produced in Canada, US and Japan while the ones for vending machines are produced in Taiwan or China. So samples of notes would be sent to these companies for them to conduct the test runs and they would normally keep the images of the notes after the test runs.

Why did China tell the Philippines to be more like... MALAYSIA?!



I SAW THIS sign la, your article rubbish! Why my note dun go in then!? HAH? HAH?! #ihatecilisos

Some machines also got this sign. Img from @Haiqalrosli3 via Twitter.

At least, now you know this is not true la…

Wahlau, readers these days… so antagonisms for free article. ANYWAYS, as mentioned earlier, the note tests are done overseas, so machine suppliers like Evoxen, Amano and Sigma have the responsibility of sending sample notes to these companies so that they can conduct yet another test run to update and create a new image of the new notes. Vin told us that this normally happens when Bank Negara launches new notes la.

“It is quite common for new RM 1 & RM 5 notes to be distributed before CNY or Hari Raya. When there is a new circulation of new notes, there might be some changes, additional or modification of the above 4 criteria which can’t be detected by bare eyes, feel, touch or even measure it.” – Vin Lee.

And this is exactly what happened back in 2016 when a new set of ringgits, which hold the then Bank Negara governor, Muhammad bin Ibrahim’s signature, was launched. So why can’t all machines read these notes yet?

Unfortunately, updating these machines comes with a price… to the owners

“Hence, there are some car park operators or owners who do not have the budget, or are not covered by Maintenance Contract, they will not pay for this (updating machines) which charges range from RM750 to RM 1,000.” – Vin told us.



Just imagine if a car park operator has at least five machines in the parking lot, that would cost him/her about RM5,000 just to update these machines! And we haven’t even consider other operating costs like depositing money from the machines into the bank.

Thankfully, our office one ok. (even if it’s stupid in other ways k?)

Kevin told us that if your money STILL kena rejected by a new machines, it’s probably because of:

  • Note crumpled
  • Note not inserted properly (folded)
  • Dirt/ink on the note
  • Fake note
  • Torn note

So if any of ugaiz own those notes with Muhammad bin Ibrahim’s signature (like this writer here), don’t panic. You can still use them. Unless you got only coins. Wow… that’s a whole different article.


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