If you’re in Starbucks and notice a nondescript individual paying for their coffee with cash – watch out. According to the FBI you might have found evidence of a terrorist plot.

A series of fliers distributed to companies around the United States by the FBI and the Bureau of Justice Assistance appear to give workers and business owners exactly this advice. The fliers, as highlighted by the miscellania blog BoingBoing, are intended to help various businesses from hobby shop owners to car rental services identify suspicious people who might be involved in terrorist activity.

They have been collected online by the Public Intelligence collaborative research project, and are not normally released en masse by the FBI.

“Using cash for small purchases like a cup of coffee, gum and other items is a good indication that a person is trying to pass for normal without leaving the kind of paper trail created using a debit or credit card for small purchases.

The most recent update asks coffee shop owners, baristas and other customer-service specialists to be on the lookout for the enemy who walks among us (who evidently has been reanimated from the graves of the 1950s Red Scare era of blacklisting and Communist-baiting or the KGB’s constant witch hunt for capitalist sympathizers or people who resent being witch-hunted for their political beliefs). “

The best part is, we get to pay for this stuff….ya gotta love that.

See more FUD flyers at Public Intelligence.



  1. sargasso_c says:

    Anyone who orders a decafe soy latte is definitely an agent of anarchy. Just MHO.

    • pedro says:

      And you’d be right.

    • Chris says:

      Speaking as someone who identifies as an anarchist, I’ll have you know I hate lattes. Haha, I don’t have to worry about this much, though, since I hate coffee in general. Though, I do use cash a lot… I guess Big Brother isn’t happy when I refuse to pay with credit.

  2. Benjamin says:

    Well as a Ron Paul supporter, DHS already said I am a terrorist, so paying with cash for a coffee will not be a big deal. Besides, who pays for purchases less than $20.00 with a debit/credit card? No one sane does. How do you track your balance with as many low dollar transactions as people make in a day?

    • CrankyGeeksFan says:

      A purchase of less than $20.00 on a credit or debit card doesn’t even require a signature or PIN. Using cards where these small amount transactions take place – convenience stores, fast food restaurants, etc. is exposing oneself to a high possibility of identity theft.

      PCI is an abbreviation for the Payment Card Industry. Their standard for security was once half-jokingly referred to as “pay cash instead”.

  3. m.seekamp says:

    Sick country !!

  4. Taxed Enough Already Dude says:

    From their perspective, wanting to control us, anyone paying cash is dangerous.

    They will spin this every chance they get, to change the nexus, just as they have other statist advances…keep speaking lies till they seem like truth.

    Cash = freedom from Government, therefore its the enemy. Perhaps that’s why Bernanke is destroying it.

    • Taxed Enough Already Dude says:

      No doubt the propaganda press will spin out articles on the danger of cash, how its the font of all terrorism and crime…just like other progressive lies, it will be heard 24/7 till the mushheads believe it…

      Ron Paul would defeat this, Romney may very well go along with it, leaving the Czars to accomplish it under the radar…time will tell.

  5. Martin says:

    I actually prefer to pay for expensive items in cash, just to see the bewildered look on the salesclerk’s face when you whip out a big wad of bills. Like when I bought a Mac Mini at a local Apple store, the girl was all set to swipe a credit/debit card, and I took out cash instead.

  6. More importantly – there are only THREE DOTS in a typographers’ elipses. Cash payments indeed, let’s root out the real threats on our society by exposing improper typesetting – NOW!

  7. Micromike says:

    If you use cash for anything other than bribing a senator or congressman you are considered a terrorist.

    The game has changed. The US hates freedom and democracy, and makes all decisions based on fear.