How To Spot Fakes


How many times has someone on the street tried to sell you a fancy designer watch that  you suspect is a fake? Many I suspect. And some of you may have actually bought one with  the view that at least it will save you some cash. The truth is that your actions always  result in being penny wise, pounds foolish.
The counterfeit business is growing rapidly and as a result, legitimate businesses are  suffering. A recent market research in Nigeria revealed that there are currently more  inferior products in the market than originals. The research also revealed that it is  increasingly becoming very difficult to distinguish the original from the fake.
Based on this research, Consumers’ Advocate reveal to our esteemed readers how to spot  the difference between a fake and original of some selected products. So, if you’re  looking for the real deal, these are few tips on how to know whether the product you’re  buying is a fake or not?

The easiest way to tell whether a watch is a fake is the price. If it’s ridiculously low,  it’s unlikely to be genuine.
A Rolex watch should be fairly heavy so if it’s feeling a little light, chances are  you’re not holding the genuine article. Real Rolex watches also won’t make a ticking  sound and there should be a hologram sticker on the caseback.
Genuine Cartier watches, meanwhile, will have the brand name inscribed on the movement –  you’ll be able to see this if you remove the caseback. Again, the watch should be quite  heavy and if it’s genuine, it will have scratchproof glass. There should also be a  cabochon stone on the winder.

Many women adore designer handbags. But if you’re going to spend big on one, make sure  it’s genuine.
The genuine article should be made from top-notch material and if it’s a leather bag,  make sure it actually smells of leather. It should also be fairly heavy and the leather  should be a consistent colour all over. The stitching should also be good quality. If  there are any loose threads or wonky stitching, chances are, you’ve been stitched up!
Real designer bags are also likely to have the brand name in several places and this will  be sewn in – not on a cardboard label hanging off the strap. It’s also a good idea to  look for the serial code which is often on a strip of material inside a pocket or the  main compartment.

Designer Clothing
If you’re big on your labels, make sure the designer clothing you’re buying is genuine.
If it’s the real deal, it will be made from good quality material that won’t stretch or  shrink easily and the stitching will also be spot on. So try to examine the item closely  before you buy. Check for spelling mistakes on the brand name too and it’s also worth  giving the buttons a once-over to see whether they have the correct logo printed on them.

Cell Phones
This is one product that is high in demand and has the most fakes. Please note that not  all made in China phones are fakes.
There are indeed good and quality made in China phones. It will surprise you to know that  most Nokia phone are made in China. We have researched the tips you can follow to tell  whether a phone of any brand is fake or not.
Price: This should be the first thing you should look at. If the price of the phone is  way cheap, half or a even third of the original price, it’s most likely to be a scam.
Weight: Check out the official details of the phone you are purchasing or have purchased  and compare. Fake phones are likely to weigh lighter than original ones.
Colour: Some Nokia phones come only in limited colours so if its an odd colour be wary.
Unofficial Models: The drawback of having so many phone models is that it’s easy for  imitations to choose a phone family as a niche and start creating non-official models  that you cannot find on the  manufacturer’s catalogue.
Missing/Added Features: Features are mostly the reason we buy mobile phones so do a  cross-preference with the features on the phone with the official specification list.  Even imitations may copy the feature list, flaws are still present.
Keep your receipt: It will be an evidence to claim your warranty when you find out that  your phone is fake, it will also help you remember the name the store where you bought  your phone. Then, you may report it to the proper authorities

It’s not always easy, given the increasing sophistication of the fraudsters’ efforts. But  there are tell-tale signs to watch for – most obviously, cork-tampering, the wrong bottle  shape, or errors on the label.
Some fraudsters have been known to make surprisingly simple spelling mistakes. Also,  watch for bottles, capsules or labels that look too new.
It sounds obvious, but unless a bottle has recently been ‘redressed’ by the chateau, some  label damage or staining is normal in older wines.
Other signs are unusually high fill levels, corks with an incorrect vintage stamp,  bottle-markings that don’t match the label, and – for old reds – an unusually deep  colour, an unexpectedly young taste, or a wine that doesn’t throw sediment.

The truth is that those that couple laptop are smart in their act. Except with the  assistance of a computer engineer, it will be almost impossible for you to know a fake  laptop by just looking or examining it.
What they do is to simply change the configuration to be less that what the label claims.  Our best advice is for you to purchase your laptop from accredited dealers.
With your receipt, you should be able to return it back to them if you later discover  they sold you a fake.  If you must buy your laptop from just any shop, then check for  spelling errors. This may be your best bet in knowing if it is fake.  Also, ensure that  you are the first to run the window. If you switch on the laptop and the window is ready  for use, drop it fast because it has been tampered with.
As for laptop chargers, reports indicate that in the last couple of years, the Nigerian  market has become flooded with low quality laptop chargers and more worryingly still  counterfeit laptop adaptors.
You may well ask how is it possible to tell whether a laptop charger is of low quality or  is a fake. Fortunately for customers it is actually quite straightforward to identify the  vast majority of fake laptop chargers.
Firstly, you will probably notice that the laptop adaptor is considerably lighter in  weight than your original laptop charger.This is because the quality of the internal  components used inside the laptop adaptor and the quality of the plastic used to mould  the laptop adaptor body are of inferior quality.
Secondly, it may sound ridiculous but because English is not the native language of these  cheap Chinese factories, you will often find that counterfeit chargers will have spelling  mistakes on the laptop adaptor label.
We have seen instances of ‘safety mark’ being spelt incorrectly on the laptop AC adapter  label for example. Lastly, you may also notice that the laptop charger label will appear  less glossy than that on your original charger and may even not have been stuck on  straight.
This is because whereas in the original OEM factories all the production process is  automated, fake laptop chargers are made with several of the process involving manual  labour, and this includes sticking the laptop adapter labels onto the laptop charger  body.

Counterfeit sunglasses are likely to feel cheap and the designer logo will look cheaply  printed.
The hinges will also be flimsy and poorly aligned. And be wary if the glasses say they  were made in China or Taiwan.
The real thing, however, will feel heavier and more solid and will come with luxurious  packaging, including a box, case and tags.
Be warned that counterfeit sunglasses usually don’t offer adequate protection from the  sun’s powerful UV rays.

Most times we get to know that a battery is fake after we have bought and used  it. This  knowledge is often too late because our money would have been  wasted.
When it comes to detecting a fake battery, its really about the packaging.  If the  packaging is color faded, and or blurred, run a mile. The problem starts when you start  to see names like Sony, Duracell, Tiger Head, Tudor or Eve ready.
With these well known brands one is easily tempted to part with cash and expect a good  battery life span. Nope.
They are all counterfeited to the point where it’s hard to get the real thing. Packaging  can reveal the worst fakes.
Some tips to look out for are:
•Faded colors
•Loose plastic covers
•Badly constructed packaging (cheap card etc)
•Crazy claims
Most genuine rechargeable AA batteries are a maximum of 2700 mAh meaning their strength.  Fakes often make claims to be 3800 or 4000. Avoid these ones at all costs. They won’t  last a week.

If you’re hoping to boost your film collection, watch out for counterfeit DVDs.
These will usually have poor sound and picture quality and even though they’ll be cheap,  they often won’t be worth the price.
If the DVD in question is marked Region 0 or Region Free, it’s likely to be a fake – the  majority of genuine recently released DVDs are encoded for a specific region (Region 1 or  Region 2).
What’s more, the disc itself is likely to be coloured, rather than silver, if it’s a  fake, and there won’t be a title printed on it.
As for the cover, make sure there are no spelling mistakes and check the images are  clear. The cover should also contain a security hologram.

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