Caution! Hundreds of Websites Selling Counterfeit Gold and Silver Coins
Looking to buy gold and silver, “Oliver,” an investor in Texas, responded to advertisements on Facebook from two companies that touted exceptionally low “introductory oer” prices for silver and gold bullion coins. He paid $1,000 and now is trying to get his money back because the “gold coin” and all 50 “silver coins” he received are counterfeits made in China, according to the non-prot AntiCounterfeiting Educational Foundation.
“I started suspecting they were not genuine when tracking information for my orders was in Chinese,” said Oliver. “That was a red flag. I also saw the same advertisement online with the same format and same pricing but with different company names. When I received the orders, I thought I had gotten taken.”
At the time he placed his order, a oneounce United States Mint-produced American Gold Eagle would have been priced at about $1,950. He paid $499 but got a counterfeit. Each of the 50 oneounce American Silver Eagle coins he ordered should have sold for about $40 each, a total of about $2,000 for 50 genuine examples. Oliver paid $499.98 for 50 but received only fakes.
He now is working with his credit card companies to reverse the charges on his two purchases and is assisting the Anti-Counterfeiting Educational Foundation (ACEF) to alert investigators and the public. “Chinese counterfeiters are blowing up the web selling fake silver and gold coins that may look like the real thing at rst glance but certainly are not. We’ve seen suspicious ads posted on many platforms, including Amazon and Facebook, with links to the fraudsters’ websites,” cautioned Doug Davis, ACEF anti-counterfeiting director.
“e counterfeiters and their accomplices are heavily marketing fakes through social media and online ‘coin dealer’ websites. We now are tracking
more than 300 websites selling fakes, many of them operated by the same individuals or companies, but oen under dierent company names. Some even copy the exact wording and actual photos from legitimate dealers’ web pages,” explained Davis, a former Texas Police Chief.
“Remember, if you don’t know precious metals or rare coins, you’d better know a reputable seller, such as experts a liated with the Accredited Precious Metals Dealer program (www. APMDdealers.org) or the Professional Numismatists Guild (www.PNGdealers. org),” advised Davis.
NGC ANNOUNCES IMPROVEMENTS TO RETURN SHIPPING & INSURANCE SERVICES
Numismatic Guaranty Company (NGC) is pleased to announce improvements to its return shipping and insurance services. Many return shipments will now arrive faster and at a lower cost to submitters, and international return shipments sent via FedEx will now be insured for up to $50,000 per package.
e changes apply to return shipments from NGC’s Sarasota, Florida, headquarters. With the updates, NGC will generally ship completed submissions to U.S. addresses via FedEx with insurance coverage of up to $100,000 per package procured by NGC. e FedEx shipping method used will be based on the submitter’s declared values, with signicant savings in many cases when compared to today’s rates.
PCGS Launches Pack-Grading and New SmallSize Holders for Banknotes
Professional Coin Grading Service has o cially launched pack grading for those who wish to submit their banknote packs for encapsulation. e PCGS pack holders, which allow for half (50) or full (100) consecutive serial-numbered banknotes to be encapsulated in a single holder, are ideal for grading banknote packs whose historic or collectible significance is better maintained by keeping the notes physically together.
“e benet of grading an entire pack of banknotes rather than individual notes has a lot to do with certain collectible characteristics that are unique to packs of banknotes, such as keeping together a run of notes with consecutive numbers, consecutive star notes, and the like,” explained PCGS President Stephanie Sabin. “ere are even cases where a pack of notes may be historical or collectible for other reasons, such as having an origin associated with a bank hoard, a notable collector, or other numismatically signicant factors.”
“So many of the submissions we received are U.S. small-size notes, fractional and postage currency, and other notes from around the world that are smaller than the large-size notes our holders were designed to accommodate. With these new holders, PCGS oers a right-sized solution for a wide variety of banknotes,” said Sabin.