How would you tell if an autograph is real or fake?


Do you want to discover whether that signed item from one of your favorite celebrities is genuine? Here are some pointers to guarantee that the signature is both authentic and striking.

  1. Turn it inside out.

Turning a signature upside down is the greatest method to compare it. This way, your mind will not be reading it, and you will be able to examine objectively for telltale indications and slight variations between the two that will expose it as a forgery.

  1. Be aware of signatures that have been stamped.

Fake signatures are often replicated mechanically. Run your thumb over the signature, paying particular attention to the outline. If the “autograph” is flat, it is most likely a facsimile.

Alternatively, if you can feel the texture of the ink on the top of the paper, you know it was applied afterward.

Also, keep in mind that this method will not work on fabric goods such as sports shirts, absorbing the ink and leaving no raised layer.

  1. Take a careful look at the ink.

Look for visual cues using your magnifying lens.

All of the ink is applied simultaneously and pressed to the rubber’s edges with stamped-on signatures. You may notice more ink on the borders of the lines than in the center if you use a magnifying lens. Look for autographs that have an abnormally “smooth” appearance if a machine produced them. Examine the ink’s color. Examine the ink if you have determined that the paper is most likely genuine. It may be oxidized if it is dark brown, like dried blood. Iron oxide was found in several ancient inks. There were inks made of a complicated cake dissolved in a water and egg yolk mixture if it is a dark brown that fades to yellow at the margins. That, however, would be highly ancient. Vellum would very likely be the paper used for those links. There was nothing else available at the time. On the other hand, autographs may be reproduced using an autopen, which utilizes a mechanical arm to move a pen along a plastic or metal signature template, or “matrix” The next step will give further information.


  1. Keep an eye out for “robotic” telltale indicators.

When you sign your name, you do it in one fluid motion. Also, when you move the pen towards the paper, it moves before you start writing.

The autopen, on the other hand, starts with a dot and finishes with another dot. A magnifying lens may be used to view this. Vibrations in the autopen machine may cause the signature to look abnormally “shaky” Keep an eye out for machine-like straight lines, particularly if they are broken by “robotic” wobbles that indicate where the autopen has slid. Keep an eye out for discrepancies. Do the lines pause? Does it seem like the pen has been removed from the paper? Some individuals do this, but where the line is interrupted is frequently a telltale sign of a fake.

  1. Expose it to the light.

If the signature’s ink seems too light or has been placed evenly throughout, it is most certainly a forgery.

It has almost definitely been stamped if it emits a shaded purple hue.

Another method is to get the celebrity’s signature on a negative photograph, which is then reproduced. If the color of the signature on the picture is silver, it was most likely stamped. It is most likely a fake if it looks like pulped paper, yet the signature is A Lincoln. Look for the “laid paper.” lines. These are the lines created by dried linen or vegetable fibers. Throughout the 18th century, laid paper was widely used.

  1. Consider the numbers

A forger may create 30 or 40 phony David Beckham signatures in a single day. Beckham, on the other hand, would never sign that many. He will probably only sign one at a time for fear of their being auctioned. As a consequence, reputable dealers are unlikely to carry more than one David Beckham signature each month.

Also, keep in mind that celebrities and other public people may often devote an autograph to a specific person, making it solely valuable for that person.

  1. Be wary of secret auctions or vendor demands for anonymity.


– This is often a ruse to conceal the transaction. There is no need for a vendor to want confidentiality in their interactions with you. A trustworthy vendor will provide evidence to back up the provenance of the signatures they offer. A reputable company should provide you with a lifetime warranty. Reputable vendors will also be transparent about their background, previous transactions, references, and competence.

  1. Consider how, when, and why the document was signed.

If a pre-1960s autograph is signed using a felt pen, it is a forgery. Before the 1960s, felt cells did not exist, and they should be marked with ink.

  1. Consider the following questions:

Is it possible that the individual who signed this did so? Why would you sign an index card if you were the President of the United States, for example? There are tens of thousands of military appointment or discharge certificates, instances of paper money, postmaster positions, and land grants signed after the 1930s that are not authentic.

  1. Use a trusted authentication provider.

Do not be disheartened; there are genuine instances of the previous papers. However, it is a good idea to get expert guidance – and make sure it comes from a reliable and trustworthy source.

  1. Look for any additional language that may be used to verify the signature or autograph’s authenticity.

Something is amiss if Mark Twain is writing about flying in a jet aircraft.

It is most likely not genuine.

The greater the number of signatures on work, the more errors there are to detect. When you compare a sports jersey with ten counterfeit team autographs to one with ten genuine ones, it is simple to tell which.

A single individual often authors the fakes. They will be the same height, equally spaced, and sometimes even oriented in the same direction.

Being there when a signature is made is the greatest method to ensure its authenticity. If you are writing to a celebrity for an autograph, do not expect them to sign it personally. In many instances, they will have an assistant do it for them. Unfortunately, the only method to prevent this occurrence is to be there when the individual signs it.

Published by schodermedia

A public relations and E-commerce consultant in New Mexico. I am also a longtime collector and online dealer of quality items. DM for all inquires. #thecollector #baseballcards #sports #antiques #collectibles #reseller

%d bloggers like this: