IN CASE you have forgotten, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) will demonetize or withdraw from circulation old bills issued before December 2010. I am glad a friend reminded me about this so I can remind you.
As announced earlier by BSP, you may use old bills for daily cash transactions, paying and buying goods and services and for other business or financial transactions, only until Dec. 31.
By Jan. 1, only the New Generation Currency (NGC) bills released in December 2010 will be accepted in establishments. If you still have old banknotes by then, you can exchange them at authorized banks or the BSP Cash Department to get their full value.
BSP Deputy Governor Diwa C. Guinigundo says, “Starting Jan. 1, 2017, NDS [New Design Series] banknotes that have not been exchanged shall no longer have any monetary value and are considered demonetized.”
Guinigundo says the NGC bills “have more and enhanced security features to protect the… public against counterfeiters.”
You can tell the difference between NDC and NGC banknotes by the colors, but probably the easiest way to differentiate between the two is to look at the serial number. In the NDS, digits are all the same size, while in the NGC every digit is larger than the one before it.
Don’t be stuck with worthless currency. Use your NDS bills now or exchange them for the NGC banknotes.
Mobile phone users, subscribers of different networks, have been receiving messages like these: “I have important information for you, please contact me on this e-mail address for detail: [email protected]” and “Hello, I’m Mr. Mark, I know this message may come to you as a surprise, consider this with seriousness and contact my e-mail for details ([email protected]).”
Both Smart and Globe say this is another kind of scam. Smart says this may be a “phishing” expedition. Phishing, for those unfamiliar with the term, is defined as “the fraudulent practice of sending e-mail, purportedly from reputable companies, in order to induce individuals to reveal personal information, such as passwords and credit card numbers.”
The persons sending the text messages do not claim to represent any company, but there is a hint that the information they have is urgent and something recipients need to know immediately.
Globe says they will alert their technical people about this.
A reader who identifies himself as a food lover wants to know if it is all right to use Maggi Magic Sarap meaty seasoning. He says he has been told by representatives of some companies selling cooking utensils that there are some issues with the flavoring.
I do not know how much people selling utensils know about cooking. I myself am not familiar with the product, as I don’t cook. At any rate, I checked out Maggi Magic Sarap and found out that some people have a problem with a perceived high salt content. Others want specifics on the meat flavoring.
A major concern, however, were reports that the United States Customs would not allow the product into the country.
Nestlé, which makes Maggi Magic Sarap, says on its web site, “Like any food product that is not registered for sale in the United States, Maggi Magic Sarap may face restrictions from customs authorities if the quantity suggests that the product is being brought into the country for resale or for commercial purposes.”
It assures consumers that the product “is not associated with any health issues and complies with all food safety, quality and regulatory standards of the Philippine Food and Drug Administration and that of Nestlé.”
Send letters to The Consumer, Lifestyle Section, Philippine Daily Inquirer, 1098 Chino Roces Ave. cor. Mascardo and Yague Sts., 1204 Makati City; fax 8974793/94; or e-mail [email protected]