SEOUL, Jan. 25 (Yonhap) — The number of counterfeit South Korean banknotes fell to a record low in 2020, the Bank of Korea (BOK) said Monday, as the coronavirus pandemic caused a decline in cash usage.

Last year, the number of fake banknotes found in South Korea came to 272, down 6.8 percent from a year earlier and marking the lowest since the BOK began releasing such data in 1998.

The decline was mainly due to a “drop in in-person cash usage as COVID-19 spreads,” the BOK said.

By denomination, 5,000-won counterfeit bills accounted for 42.6 percent of all counterfeit bills found here, with 116 bills, while 10,000-won counterfeit bills came to 115, or 42.3 percent of the total.

The highest denomination bills (50,000 won) had only 26 counterfeit cases, accounting for 9.6 percent of the total, according to the central bank.