How To Spot Counterfeit Forever Stamps
The easiest way to check if a Forever Stamp is authentic is to check for "Tagging". Tagging is a term for an invisible phosphorescent ink that's been 'tagged' on the stamp, and shows up as green tint when held under a UV light. If the stamp glows a blue color with no green in it, then it is missing it's tagging.
As long as there's been postage, there have been people who have tried to fake them. There currently is a large number of counterfeit forever stamps in the market. These are the most notorious. If you did not purchase your postage from the Post Office directly, please be sure to confirm their authenticity before sending to us.
Star Spangled Banner
The easiest way to tell this fake is by looking for the micro print "hidden mark" in the fireworks above the flagpole. There is a tiny USPS inscription that is not legible in the fakes. Inscriptions on counterfeit have thick letters or numbers. Genuine stamps have thin lettering. The “O” of “FOREVER” on counterfeit is wide. On genuine stamps the “O” is narrow. More information about this counterfeit can be found here. Authentic versions contain tagging, and counterfeits do not.
Black Vintage Rose
Using a magnifying glass, the real version of this stamp is made up of mostly solid crisp lines. The fake version is made up mostly of tiny dots. Without using a magnifying glass, the counterfeit can appear to look clean and crisp, so magnification is typically required to see the tiny dots that make up most of the image. The counterfeit was printed with a special technique using layers of raised ink to simulate the raised engraving print of the authentic version, so using touch will not distinguish the two. Authentic versions contain tagging, and counterfeits do not.
Red & White Hearts
This design can be tough to tell. Aside from the tagging, the best way to tell is to look at the gloss of the printing. The real version should be a matte, and not shine when moved under the light. The counterfeit version has a glossy sheen and will reflect light much more when moving back and forth under a light. Do not be fooled by the metallic silver ink on the white stamps. It is present on both the authentic and fake stamps. Authentic versions contain tagging, and counterfeits do not.