LONDON, March 19 (UPI) -- Britain's new one-pound coin is counterfeit proof thanks to award-winning technology developed in Wales, the Royal Mint says.
The Royal mint has been working for the past four years to imbed the same security technology used in bank notes into coins, the BBC reported Wednesday.
"ISIS (Integrated Secure Identification Systems) is technology that has been available in bank notes for 20 years but now we can actually use it in a coin," said Andrew Mills, the Royal Mint's director of circulating coin. "Up until now it's been more difficult to use in coins because they're metal, but now we can."
Counterfeit pound coins cost the mint over $3 million a year, Mills said. There are an estimated 45 million forgeries in circulation.
"Ideally, with iSIS, we can identify every counterfeit," Mills said. "The development of our iSIS project has enabled us to develop a new generation of low cost, high security, plated coin with multiple levels of banknote-strength security built in."
The new coin will be introduced in 2017.