Fake and altered coins were a major concern for coin collectors in the country because of abuses on the Internet.Some local and international online coin sellers have offered many obviously counterfeit or altered coins,taking advantage of unwary buyers with little or no knowledge.

There are strong warning against buyers buying popular coins like Silver Trade Dollars,Strait Settlement Dollars, China Dragon Silver Dollars,Japan Meiji One Yen and Silver Trade Dollars etc online offered by online coin sellers from China,Hong Kong,Taiwan and Singapore Internet Website.

There are three basic types of inauthentic coins;ALTERED,CAST COUNTERFEITS AND DIE-STRUCK COUNTERFEIT COINS


 An altered coin is a real coin that has been tempered with.For example,the 1971 ten cents coin is a rare,valuable,sought-after coin in all grades.Even heavily circulated examples command good premiums.Some 1977 or 1981 ten cents coins have been found with altered dates to resemble 1971 ten cents coin. However,the tooling marks on the altered dates are readily apparent and might even  can be easily detected without a magnifying glass.The retooling of the "7" to make it look like a "1" or the "8" to make it look like a "7" is obvious. Dates are altered in other ways, too. Always look closely at the date if the coin is a date rarity.

Cast counterfeits are cast impressions of copies of genuine coins.A cast counterfeit coin is ,therefore,a copy of a copy.
Detecting a cast counterfeit coin is easier than detecting a die-struck counterfeit. For example,if the coin lacks a reeded edge,a seam will be visible.This seam,though often disguised by the counterfeiter,is always there. On reeded coins,that edge has no seam.But the reeding will be less uniform and even than a genuine coins. A dropped cast counterfeit coin won't "ring" true.Genuine coins have a delicate,warm "ring" when lightly dropped.

Samples of the Cast Counterfeits.
(Dickson  Niew Collection)
 Because a cast counterfeit is a cast impression of a copy of a genuine coin, cast counterfeits are grainy and easily recognized for what there are.Cast counterfeits tend to have porous surfaces,these holes can be linked to the casting process,not circulation.

The die-struck counterfeit coin is the most difficult of all counterfeits to detect because it's struck with two dies,just like a genuine coin minting process.Even some leading coin dealers are unable to distinguish every die-struck counterfeit coin.Being able to detect a die-struck counterfeit requires many years of experience and study.

Samples Of  Die-Struck Counterfeits
(Dickson Niew Collection)
The ability to spot die-struck counterfeits has a lot to do with how good a memory you have for hundreds of die varieties of die-struck counterfeits.Almost every die-struck counterfeit has its own separate set of diagnostic characteristics.
Die-Struck Counterfeits will have similar Mint Errors (Planchet Errors,Strike Errors and Die Errors/Varieties) like the normal coins.

The more familiar you become with what the real coin should look like and what the counterfeit does look like,the better you will become at detecting counterfeits.


  1. Dear Sifu,

    While sorting my old coins, i found one 50 cent which have a very peculiar star (a bit oversized) in the middle of the upper wau compared with the rest 50 cent coins.

    Searching for clues here i found it's identical with the discription and picture you posted. Even though a die-struck counterfeit i believed this is a hard to find coin nowadays.

    A very helpful site for reference.

  2. Hi Seri Bahasa,
    Glad to know that my Blog is helpful to you.
    From your prescription,it should be a 2004 or 2005 50 cents forgery coin. You may send me an image for authentication.