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Common counterfeit theme...?


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I've decided to do post this thread in a different way to attempt to expose how counterfeiters these days try to peddle their wares. In this topic, I'll only focus on world coins. Unfortunately these sellers seem to be very successful judging by their feedback.

In the past it used to be easy to tell what replicas / forgeries / counterfeits are. Historically it has been "crude details", "wrong metal", "weight under / over weight", "seller in China". Not today.

Counterfeiters have been busy at work learning where they made mistakes and made huge improvements since then. In fact, it's even got major TPGs very busy. Some interesting news can be read here - https://www.ngccoin.com/news/article/5378/Counterfeit-Detection-2015-Chinese-New-Year-Silver-3-Yuan/

So what are counterfeits doing to sell their wares these days? They have improved and diversified their products. In my opinion, no coins these days are safe from being counterfeited. I do own a 1 yuan counterfeited yuan which is worth a mere face value of just 12 US cents.

Now I'm listing a group of sellers which I found similar themes. Bear in mind that this is a small group of sellers I've seen. I would like to point out their similarities.

aleale_srvhpjni http://www.ebay.com/sch/aleale_srvhpjni/m.html?LH_Complete=1&rt=nc&_trksid=p2046732.m1684

craius1 http://www.ebay.com/sch/craius1/m.html?LH_Complete=1&rt=nc&_trksid=p2046732.m1684

getmisscakes http://www.ebay.com/sch/getmisscakes/m.html?LH_Complete=1&rt=nc&_trksid=p2046732.m1684

happycoins2010 http://www.ebay.com/sch/happycoins2010/m.html?LH_Complete=1&rt=nc&_trksid=p2046732.m1684

jakscottj-0 http://www.ebay.com/sch/jakscottj-0/m.html?LH_Complete=1&rt=nc&_trksid=p2046732.m1684

kriknott0 http://www.ebay.com/sch/kriknott0/m.html?LH_Complete=1&rt=nc&_trksid=p2046732.m1684

laparkesmit0 http://www.ebay.com/sch/laparkesmit0/m.html?LH_Complete=1&rt=nc&_trksid=p2046732.m1684

sandrabryanea9 http://www.ebay.com/sch/sandrabryanea9/m.html?LH_Complete=1&rt=nc&_trksid=p2046732.m1684

I make no apologies for the listed sellers as they have sold counterfeits. Notice a similar trend? Many of these are highly collectable coins and they have been sold for a fraction of what they should be worth. The biggest red flag is how diversified they are and often in "high grade" condition. These are often from high popular countries such as China, Japan, Korea, France, Germany, Italy, Swiss, US etc. Some are pretty obscure coinage as well. Let's be realistic - if you see such hoard appearing all at once in the last few months, something does not add up does it? On top of this, the luster of such counterfeits seem to be similar across different sellers.

Now let's put it from a counterfeiter's prospective. I'm certain that it would be more profitable to create a batch of counterfeits at once rather than making one off. So if a counterfeiter makes 50 different types of coins, at least 50 copies each, spread it across 50 different sellers with different combination... this is what we are seeing now. No longer has it been a seller that specializes in selling a specific counterfeit. They have learned and buyers are now facing it.

So what does it mean for collectors? We must continue to learn about the hobby and not get bitten into this counterfeit bug. I am certain there must be an illegal business ring behind the scene and we should not give them a single cent of our hard earned money. These people will continue to improve their wares with the help of uninformed buyers. Not only that - this also sends a wrong message to both genuine buyers and sellers. From a honest seller's point of view, it would hurt to have buyers claiming that their products are overpriced should they reference prices off counterfeits.

For now - if you see a seller being too diversified with unreal grades, run. I've seen a seller with more than 1000 feedback and still manage to get away with selling counterfeits. Best advice is to continue to learn more about the hobby and be an expert in it.


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