Treasury cracks down on money fraud

The Department of the Treasury is looking to crack down on fraud schemes that milk Uncle Sam for free money.

Treasury Department's Bureau of Engraving and Printing announced Wednesday new rules for people who turn in old, worn out currency to redeem it for fresh bills. They must turn in at least half of the mutilated bill, so that the government is convinced they will not send in the other half for a second refund.

The new rules also state they cannot tape or glue pieces of a bill together, because it makes it difficult for investigators to determine fraud.

The Treasury Department has long offered this currency exchange program as a way to make sure old currency is replaced with new currency. But the agency has not updated the rules since 1991.

The Treasury said Wednesday it has noticed a problem with fraudsters trying to swindle the government out of money that does not belong to them.

"The Bureau of Engraving and Printing has encountered some schemes where currency is intentionally mutilated in an apparent attempt to defraud the government," the agency wrote in the Federal Register. "The intentionally mutilated currency is often intermingled with other bills in an apparent effort to thwart detection."