Counterfeiting Incident

Casascius coins are selling for increasingly high amounts, and with such amounts changing
hands it is only a matter of time before fake products enter the market. Few things of value
are immune to this; there is fake money, fake bullion bars, fake passports and fake versions
of nearly every perfume and clothing brand. Counterfeiting cannot be stopped, but steps can
be taken to avoid buying an un-original product.
To date, there has only been one known case of a
fake coin being listed for sale: a ‘convincing’ 25
BTC coin was listed on eBay by new user ‘tradus
1980’ in February 2014. Two months prior, a photo
showing a sheet of hologram stickers mimicking
Casascius’ series 1 1 BTC 2011 coins came to light,
with each sticker having a unique code. They are
similar but clearly identifiable to the trained eye;
they have not appeared for sale to date (it cannot
be confirmed if the fake on eBay used one of
these). Casascius commented on the incident,
saying that “They use a different type face for
the main Casascius as well as a slightly different
B-logo shape. My series 1 coins also use a dotmatrix
style printing with fixed width characters,
rather than the solid characters in a proportional
font that appear in this photo.”1
Assuming that Casascius coins (and other physical
crypto-currencies) increase in value and maintain
a robust market, it is likely that increasingly
convincing replications will be passed on as
original coins bearing a crypto-currency balance.
The best defense against such actions is education
and information, as well as a healthy suspicion and
attentiveness.