While counterfeit bullion coins as well as counterfeit bullion bars have always existed, rising spot prices on the precious metal market have made this practice even more lucrative for counterfeiters in recent times. Multiple practices have been adopted by the bullion industry as a safeguard such as the Sunshine Mint‘s Mint Mark SI™ system, micro-engraved letters at specific places on bullion coins (like on the Australian Kangaroo coins), holographic features (like on the British Britannia coins) etc. The MintID system is another new and unique approach that ensures the authenticity of all MintID bullion, no matter whether it’s coins or bars out of gold or silver.
To prevent counterfeiting, all MintID bullion is equipped with a custom designed NFC chip that stores a unique encrypted and tamper-proof digital certificate. This chip is either attached to the bullion product itself (underneath the blue and white MintID logo on the reverse side of bullion bars) or embedded in the packaging (in the case of bullion coins). MintID only works with renowned minting facilities that are ISO: 9001 certified. These minting facilities ship their bullion products in tubes and monster boxes to the MintID factory which then attaches the MintID chip to the product or packaging. All MintID bullion is individually encased in tamper-proof packaging.
Information that authenticates the genuineness of each respective bullion product is stored on secure servers in the cloud. All buyers need to do to check whether a certain MintID bullion product is genuine or not is to scan the NFC chip with the free MintID mobile app (available at both the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store). The digital identity of each genuine MintID bullion product will then be retrieved from the cloud and sent to the mobile device. That process is basically instantaneous and the specifications for the respective bullion product will be shown along with the authentication on the buyer’s mobile device.
Tampering with this process is supposedly impossible as MintID claims that its locked and AES 128 bit encrypted microchips cannot be copied or cloned. What’s more, these special microchips are designed to self-destruct when tampering is detected. Even though the NFC microchips are not on the product itself in the case of bullion coins, security is maintained through the use of special MintID blisterpacks. The NFC chip is included within the blisterpack design and tamper-evident seals make it supposedly impossible to switch the encased genuine bullion coin with a counterfeit one.
The added security that MintID bullion provides of course comes at a cost. You will pay significantly higher premiums for bullion products that are protected against counterfeiting in this way. If you only buy your bullion products from reputable precious metal dealers that obtain their products directly from the mint that produces them, then Buy-Gold.Link deems it unnecessary to buy MintID bullion products for these higher premiums. If you have a different opinion about this issue, feel free to comment below.