Counterfeit Coins or Banknotes

PNG LogoThe Professional Numismatists Guild ( has formed a committee composed of PNG members and non-members to research and draft an industry-acceptable definition of "coin doctoring."

"They will draft an exhaustive but concise definition. Coin doctoring is a crucial, perplexing issue that needs to be addressed for the benefit of collectors and dealers," said Jeffrey Bernberg, PNG President. "We’re determined to get this done."

The committee is headed by John Albanese, President of Certified Acceptance Corporation (CAC) and the […]



Officials of the Professional Coin Grading Service ( are applauding the efforts of collector Mike Marshall of Trenton, Ontario in combating the sales of counterfeit coins in Canada. At the recent PCGS Set Registry(SM) luncheon, PCGS announced it was awarding him with a check for $5,000 and a plaque praising his work.

"Mike Marshall has been a huge aid to PCGS in combating Chinese counterfeiting. His tenacity resulted in the removal of several counterfeiters from online auctions," said Don Willis, President of PCGS, a division of Collectors Universe, Inc. (Nasdaq: CLCT)…

In 2009, Marshall wrote an article for Canadian Coin News that detailed the counterfeiting problems and […]


2 euroRecent numbers show that counterfeit euro coins continue to be a problem in the European Union, albeit a relatively small one.

In 2010, authorities removed a total of 186,000 counterfeit euro coins from circulation. This was an increase on the previous year of 13,900 coins, but still well under the numbers recorded in 2007 and 2008 […]


"The Nazi Scourge: Postal Evidence of the Holocaust and the Devastation of Europe," an award-winning exhibit of over 300 World War II era documents related to the Nazis attempted extermination of Jews and others, will be publicly displayed for the first time in Massachusetts. The exhibit includes examples of counterfeit Bank of England paper money […]


The PCGS Coin Sniffer™, a process incorporating advanced technology for detecting foreign materials and other enhancements on a coin’s surface, will be used in two roll-out phases on all PCGS Secure Plus™ submissions with the first step beginning in September or October 2010. "When our testing and development are completed, the PCGS Coin Sniffer will […]


Professional Coin Grading Service ( today revealed additional steps it is taking to improve its ability to detect altered coins.

Doctored Standing Liberty quarter coin
This detail image of a "doctored" Standing Liberty quarter shows the decomposition of soft metal that was applied to the coin and shaped, apparently with a jeweler’s engraving tool, to simulate a "Full Head." (Photo courtesy of PCGS.)

PCGS announced that it has a process in development which will detect any foreign substance on a coin’s surface, and also announced a major lawsuit filed against alleged coin doctors.

According to PCGS officials, in conjunction with the development of coin recognition technology launched in March of this year, PCGS has been developing a process to detect foreign materials and other enhancements to a coin’s surfaces.

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The one-day seminar, "Introduction to Counterfeit Detection of United States Coins," will be offered April 22 at the Hyatt Regency Dearborn in Dearborn, Mich. The seminar is presented through the ANA’s Florence Schook School of Numismatics, and is in conjunction with the Michigan State Numismatic Society’s Spring Convention, April 23-25. Join instructor Mike Ellis, noted […]


At the end of December 2009, the Police Service of Northern Ireland issued advice to the public following reports that a number of counterfeit £1 coins had been detected in circulation across Northern Ireland. The Royal Mint supports this advice and is seeking to correct an inaccuracy that has been reported in the Northern Irish […]


Information provided to Northern California law enforcement authorities by Professional Coin Grading Service led to the arrest of a suspect who is now under investigation in connection with the sales of fraudulently altered Morgan dollars in tampered PCGS holders for nearly $300,000.

Counterfeited Morgan Dollar and Tampered PCGS Holder
CLICK TO ENLARGE: These four photographs show a tampered PCGS encapsulation holder with a fraudulent insert. When the holder was cracked open it revealed that it housed the pictured coins, a genuine 1879 and a genuine Carson City Mint dollar that were split in two along the rim to create an "1879-CC." PCGS experts believe the diagnostic evidence indicates the 1879 Morgan dollar used in this case most likely was an 1879-S. (Photo credit: Professional Coin Grading Service.)


"Genuine, common date Morgan dollars were split into two pieces (front and back along the rim), then adhered to each other in combinations to create the illusion of rare date and mintmarks.  The coins then were placed in tampered PCGS holders to give the coin credibility in the marketplace and to hide the alterations," said Stephen Mayer, Chief Operating Officer of Collectors Universe, Inc. (NASDAQ: CLCT), parent company of Professional Coin Grading Service.


Among the fraudulent alterations were "1883-S," "1884-S" and "1903-S" that were deceitfully labeled as PCGS MS65, MS63 and MS64, respectively.

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(Fallbrook, California) – Chinese-made counterfeit coins pose a significant financial threat to unsuspecting consumers, according to leaders of five of the country’s most influential rare coin organizations. They warn the public is spending millions of dollars on fake U.S. coins offered in online auctions and elsewhere, such as flea markets and swap meets. This counterfeit […]