Counterfeit Silver: How to Spot Fakes and Protect Your Investment

Investing in Silver bullion is a highly popular way of hedging your wealth against times of economic crisis. It is a tangible asset that has been known to be reliable for centuries. However, with the rise in popularity amongst investors, also began the rise of counterfeit bullion entering the market. As an investor or collector, it is imperative that you know what you are purchasing and safeguard yourself from wasting your hard earned wealth on any counterfeit bullion. 

Tests to Identify Fake Silver 

  • Magnet Test 

It is important to note that Silver is not magnetic. So if you bring a magnet close to your Silver bullion and it sticks, that is a clear sign of it being counterfeit. However, it is equally important to note that some fake silver bullion are produced with non-magnetic metals, so the magnet test should not be the only way you check. 

  • Weight and Dimensions 

When doing this test, it is recommended that you use a high quality scale that gives you precise measurements. When looking at the weight it is important to note that Silver coins, bars or rounds will always display the correct weight (typically in troy ounces). One troy ounce is 31.1 Grams, so when you weigh your bullion, make sure the weight numbers match up. Moreover, when checking dimensions you can always cross check online with the exact measurements and verify that they match up. 

  • Visual Inspection 

Always examine the bullion for details in the design, text, craftsmanship and colour. Sometimes counterfeits miss details and also have off colours that aren’t shiny. 

  • Ping Test (Sound Test) 

Silver bullion makes a distinct ‘ring’ sound when struck. Simply just gently tap the bullion with another metal object and listen for a long lasting ring. This test will take some experience to master. 

  • The Ice Test 

Out of all the precious metals, Silver has the highest thermal conductivity. Simply place an ice cube on your bullion and if it is real Silver you will see the ice start melting immediately due to the rapid head transfer. 

  • X-ray and XRF Scanners 

These scanners are an easy and accurate way to determine the purity of any bullion you put in front of them. However, they do require access to expensive and specialized equipment. AU Bullion will Glady test bullion for you in front of you when you purchase from us in store to help you feel more comfortable and confident in your purchase. 

Tips to Avoid Counterfiet Silver 

  1. Purchase from reputable dealers: The number one rule you should always follow when buying bullion is to always purchase them from reputable dealers. For example, AU Bullion is an authorized Royal Canadian Mint Bullion DNA Dealer. This means we have to uphold to the highly distinct reputation and guarantee the authenticity of everything we sell. 
  2. Educate Yourself: The more you are educated about Silver bullion, the better you will be at identifying counterfeits. 

The risk of counterfeit Silver bullion is real and it is imperative that you stay informed to help you reduce the risk of falling victim to fraud. The easiest way you can avoid counterfeits is through purchasing your bullion through reputable dealers that have to uphold to a standard. Stay informed, stay safe, and keep on stacking!