Samurai Dave: The Roving Ronin Report

Rambling Narrative of Travels, Thoughts, and Embellishments

Money Talks And Listens – Spying Canadian Coins

Coins That Spy

A Penny for Your Thoughts and Your Whereabouts
Kooky Canadian Coins

As an American, I’ve always thought Canadian currency a bit funny but not in the “ha! ha!” funny kind of way. More like the “how the hell did I end up with this goddamn Canadian quarter?”  kind of funny. I had always been particularly mystified how Canadian coins periodically would turn up in financial transactions as far south as Alabama. Usually these coins are secretly pawned off on unsuspecting victims mixed in with an assortment of change. The victim having no idea walks off and discovers too late that they’ve been hit by the chain letter of coin currency. Now they have to become the perpetrator of international money laundering.

Now it seems that perhaps these migrant Canadian coins floating about in the flotsam and jetsam of American coinage might not have been so innocent after all or even just part of a harmless but annoying currency prank.

The Pentagon has recently discovered Canadian coins tracking government contractors with high level security clearances. Why Canadian coins would want to track such people or anyone for that matter is a mystery. But it’s beleive that the coins really had no say in the matter and were being used by an unknown group.

The coins were discovered to contain radio frequency transmitters inside them. The Pentagon so far has not released information on how these transmitters exactly function but experts feel such a transmitter would have an effectively short range and be affected by the metal of the coin itself.

The coins would also be at risk of being easily passed on at restaurant or vending machine. Left in a briefcase, however, the coins might not arouse suspicion or be readily spent.

Despite the belief in the ineffectiveness of such a device, the Pentagon insists the coins are real and the risk serious.

The leading suspects who would have access to such technology which might be able to track a person for several kilometers and have actively engaged in espionage in Canada are Russia, China, and France.

Canada is not a suspect but true to its nature apologized anyway. Hollow coins have been used before by US spies to hide film and messages.

So the next time a Canadian coin just “accidentally” pops up amongst your American coins, it might just be a tracking device. The evil Russkies, the commie Chinese, or the godless French could be monitoring your every move . I know I’ll be ready. I’ll bore whoever is tracking me to death with my extreme lack of movement away from my computer and Playstation.

January 11, 2007 - Posted by | Blogroll, Canada, CIA, coins, media, news, Pentagon, politics, spies


  1. Cry me a river. I’m Canadian and we are always winding up with American coins in our pockets
    We just suck it up and keep going rather than whine about it or refuse to accept them.

    As for the tracking device? That’s untrue… buy hey, the average American isn’t
    usually bright enough to check the facts.

    By the way, when will the U.S. change the colours of its various denominations? They are
    practically impossible to differentiate is even slight darkness.

    Comment by Gerry | June 7, 2007 | Reply

  2. Ah, the vintage whine of our insecure neighbor to the north!

    This story dates from January when the news first hit the papers/net. It hasn’t been that long ago that they found out the coins were just a certain design and not trackign devices. I thought the idea funny enough to write my little bit above.

    Comment by samuraidave | June 8, 2007 | Reply

  3. Hey Gerry,

    For the past 15 years I’ve been obtaining US coins from idiots here in Canada and did quite well with them when the
    exchange rate was 1.48 …….. ya dummy ……. and you complain!

    US paper currency has changed colors, oh sorry, you’ve probably never had anything larger than a $1 bill in your hands.

    “impossible to differentiate is even slight darkness” – you’re either blind, stooopid or both.

    Comment by Dave | July 19, 2007 | Reply

  4. I think you’re on to something there.

    That would explain why vending machines will give the Canadian coins out as change.

    That same machine clams up when you try to use the change you just got from it.

    It won’t accept the quarter it just gave you!!!! WTH???

    Your theory fits this scenario.

    Comment by Mike | June 29, 2008 | Reply

  5. Omg, no big deal, we always seem to have your coins floating about our country. Big deal. At work, the stupid tourist from the states pay with american bills, when I went to Alaska they didn’t even accept Canadian currency, not even my debit card had to use my visa. So retarted. Our money is so close in worth. -Sigh- When will you learn. You guys are so full of your self. And paranoid at that. Everyone is out to get you right?!?! Bah. Deal with it.

    Comment by Kay | July 31, 2008 | Reply

  6. Kay, obviously you’re not the sharpest spoon in the drawer like your fellow canuck, Gerry.

    Is there a sarcasm-defiency problem we should be aware about up there?

    Comment by samuraidave | July 31, 2008 | Reply

  7. Ha! That is absolutely hilarious. I actually read that same story up here in Canada during January. Apparently it was the poppy in our veteran tribute quarters that threw off the pentagon down there. They thought it was some nanotechnology or spycam. It’s amazing how paranoid most governments can be eh?

    Comment by Emily | October 19, 2008 | Reply

  8. Okay, I have to admit that I was amused by how paranoid that sounded on the news, and I DO get irritated by the fact that A) I can’t use Canadian PENNIES when I’m buying a pack of gum in the US and, B) when the Canadian dollar was at $1.03 US (read, more valuable) I STILL only got a $0.92 exchange rate from a US institution when I went to visit my wife is Western New York (yes, I now have ties to both nations, get over it). However, that being said, I was just completely amused by it. I don’t doubt at all that had the shoe been on the other foot, someone from CSIS or the RCMP would have had a seizure before the truth came out. Honestly, though, it’s like the comment in the Iron Giant about the agent thinking it LESS likely that the robot was made by the Canadians than the MARTIANS. However, since trash talking and neighbour bashing does no one any good, let’s just admit that we, as a species, are really really stupid and leave it at that.

    Comment by VonDarkmoor | December 12, 2010 | Reply

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