US Coins

NGC to introduce a new slab hologram and QR code

Accessing with a smartphone the QR code on the back of the NGC grading label inserted with this certified 1893-S Morgan dollar will take the user to detailed information and images of the specific coin.

Images courtesy of Numismatic Guaranty Company.

Numismatic Guaranty Co. provided images of slabs bearing what it calls a new high-security hologram with unique QR code that the firm is introducing among its strategies to combat counterfeiting and create a safer marketplace for NGC-certified coins, tokens and medals.

Among the hologram enhancements on future NGC slabs, this QR code — a type of two-dimensional matrix barcode — and a numerical security code will be unique to the specific encapsulated collectible.

According to NGC officials, the enhancements will make it extremely difficult for counterfeiters to replicate or tamper with the NGC holder.

The enhancements can be found on the back side of the grading insert secured within the plastic holder.

According to NGC officials, “When the square-shaped QR code at the left of the hologram is scanned by a smartphone, it swiftly takes the user to that exact collectible in NGC’s Certification Verification tool. This allows a prospective buyer to quickly learn more about the collectible, including its NGC Census population data and, for many coins, its NGC Price Guide value.

“In addition, the QR code enables the user to compare the collectible in hand to the high-resolution images taken by NGC at the time of encapsulation. NGC has imaged virtually every coin, token and medal that it has certified since late 2008 and makes these images available for free on its website — an essential resource for both counterfeit detection and numismatic research.”

According to grading service officials, in addition to the security elements, “The sophisticated hologram complements the aesthetics of the encapsulated collectible, as well as NGC’s holder and label. The NGC holder offers superior long-term preservation and protection for coins, tokens and medals.

“NGC is constantly looking for new ways to both innovate and create a more transparent and safe market for collectors and dealers,” says Andy Salzberg, executive vice president of Certified Collectibles Group, NGC’s parent firm. “With the addition of this new QR code we have accomplished both. Each QR code is unique, making them virtually impossible to counterfeit. In addition, we have made it faster and easier for collectors to look up a coin on NGC’s website.”

The new security hologram will initially be used with select bulk submissions to NGC’s Sarasota, Florida, office. In the coming weeks, the use of the new hologram will be expanded to include all submissions to NGC’s Sarasota, London, Munich, and Hong Kong offices.

Within a few months, its use is expected to be implemented at NGC’s Shanghai office in China.

More than 58 million numismatic items have been certified by NGC since it was established in 1987.

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