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gia certificates how to check authenticity?

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scarleta

Brilliant_Rock
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Feb 25, 2006
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Hello : I wonder if one should be concerned if GIA certificate can be duplicated? How to check if it is authentical? I know they changed the certificate in 2006 and the GIA nr appears on the left side now, I am considering to buy certified stone and I was told " not too worry about the certificate " as I have one week return policy if I am not happy? I did receive faxed certificate( Gia dated in 2006) , but it was a poor quality fax and definitely had no nr on the side only on top and inscribed also . O boy am I ever so confused now. B 4 I " pull the trigger" on that one please give me some advice ( should I worry or just get it and have it appraised with one week return policy) I did ask for a faxed copy of the certificate ,but they had very casual approach.When I punched the carat weight and Nr on GIA site it showed up exactly same diamentions as I was faxed to me I think ( from what I could see on the poor quality of fax) Any imput would be appreacieated has anyone seen gia dated 2006 with no nr on the side? Many gracias...
 

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scarleta

Brilliant_Rock
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Feb 25, 2006
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Thanks DBM I do know what you mean. I guess I have been reading here many posts about shady vendors etc ...
This dealer was recommended as highly reputable by someone I have done lots of deals with for several years. I was just wondering if anyone has seen GIA of 2006 , with no nr on left side? Do you know ?
 

scarleta

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
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1,572
Thank you Gary , I did go to GIA and punched the nrs from very poor quality fax I received. It all matched perfectly, but I did not see the certificate nr on the fax on the left side ( as it appears on all dated 2006 ) I have been reading here for a while about horror stories and just was wondering if gia still has certificates without the nr on the left side? do you know? thanks
 

DBM

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Oct 24, 2006
Messages
404
Date: 12/14/2006 10:44:21 PM
Author: scarleta
Thanks DBM I do know what you mean. I guess I have been reading here many posts about shady vendors etc ...
This dealer was recommended as highly reputable by someone I have done lots of deals with for several years. I was just wondering if anyone has seen GIA of 2006 , with no nr on left side? Do you know ?
I honestly don''t pay attention, i''d take a look now but not in the office.

I''ll just say this for you to keep in mind:

There are 2 types of vendors who will act very casual about the need for third party affirmation/confirmation/supervision .. whatever. The kind who are trying to pull something over your eyes and the ones who are confident in the service they''ve been providing for years that they don''t feel in principle they should have to defend themselves and "verify" themselves to the customer. From my own experience i can tell you that I try to be very good to customers. But when a customer comes into my office, I spend time and patience answering all his questions fairly and straightforward and that customer still talks to me like i''m a criminal or something I tell them straight out in a nice way to "go somewhere else". If i came as a guest to their house and started treating them like criminals i doubt i''d be sticking around for too long, i don''t see why i should put up with someone slapping me in my face in my own office, no?

make sure you''re not slapping the face of a vendor #2, that''s all i''m tring to say i guess.
sorry to vent :)
 

scarleta

Brilliant_Rock
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1,572
No worries I am glad to you for your straight answer I asked for it myself.. Thanks for beeing so honest...
 

DBM

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Oct 24, 2006
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404
Date: 12/14/2006 11:04:12 PM
Author: scarleta
No worries I am glad to you for your straight answer I asked for it myself.. Thanks for beeing so honest...
no thank you for understanding and not being upset with me :) take care
 

DBM

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Oct 24, 2006
Messages
404
Date: 12/15/2006 1:02:48 AM
Author: scarleta
that is so sweet , best to you.. Thanks for straightening me out...
one time i had a couple come in from texas. he had told me on the phone he wanted a cushion cut and some other basic criteria. So i set an appointment with them on Friday and spent some time going to different suppliers and taking out various stones to show the customer. On friday they came like at 2:30 and I absolutely HAD to leave the office by 3. no prob.

They came in and I just set 3 cushion stones altogether on her hand and also showed them some rounds they wanted to see, quickly pointing out the goods and the bads of each and she very quickly chose the look she liked. In the course of all that the bf is making all these little jokes/comments about how can i prove it's really what i'm saying it is, why am i showing him an EGL diamond, what am i trying to pull on him ( i had showed him an EGLUSA diamond but discounted at a fair price of what it was worth), will i verify for him by taking the diamond to GIA and having them verify it, yada yada yada. fine. no prob.

Comes time for the price of the stone she wanted and like i said i had to leave and i didn't have time to go into a corner and calculate my cost of the diamond and all that (i had just picked it up that day and wasn't completely clear what my cost was for it) so just to make things straightforward i calculated and showed my cost in front of him. I think it was a ~1.67 ct cushion H VS1. My cost printed on the memo sheet in front of both of us was ~$7900. I told him i'd sell it for $8600 (a very good price for that stone IMO). THEN, pure nerve, the guy makes a comment of suspecting me of staging the entire thing and having faked the entire cost price and memo that had my cost written!! I'm like "COME ON what do you want from me, blood."

so it's like i feel very hurt when no matter what you do for some people they insist on treating you like "the enemy".
i'm not talking about you at all, i just thought i'd share with you a little bit of what some of us go through on the vendor side. :)
 

stebbo

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jun 8, 2006
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466
Author: scarleta
...but it was a poor quality fax and definitely had no nr on the side...
The number on the side could have been chopped off by a sloppy scan/photocopy. Unlike the old GIA report, the number is now leftmost.

Yes, many good vendors get treated unfairly by suspicous customers. Court cases reveal amazing twists, usually with the customer being the dodgy one. Good vendors simply have too much to lose, and most suspicious looking acts have genuine explanations. For example, a poor quality fax could be indicative of faxing a low-res version off a printout from the web of another stone, or it could be a printout from the wholesalers database for your stone, or from a legitimate second generation fax (wholesaler-vendor-you).

I can't imagine though why a vendor would say "don't worry about the certificate". The GIA's is a consumer vote of confidence and apparently worth paying more for, it's a selling point!

Because of this and the absence of the number on the left, I'd want to view the stone and report before it leaves the vendor (a 10 day return policy doesn't guard you against accusations of stone-switching). Obviously make sure the GIA report has the report number down the left and has all security features intact (holograph, complex background behind listed data, ...). I really can't imagine a vendor faking a report though.

More likely would be two or more reports being done on the one stone, but such scammers wouldn't request laser inscription like your stone has.

Borrow the jeweler's loupe (30x if possible, 10x can be tricky) and verify the laser inscription on the girdle. If you really want piece of mind, make sure you can see the inclusions marked on the wireframe pictures on the report-they're your diamond's fingerprint. Unless you're buying a VVS clarity or better, you should be able to locate them reasonably quickly with a 10x.

I haven't seen a GIA report with the number across the top though. Both the old and new Reports and the old and new Dossiers have them on the left.


Stebbo
 

denverappraiser

Ideal_Rock
Trade
Joined
Jul 21, 2004
Messages
8,674

I’ve seen quite a few fake grading reports both from GIA and others but I’ve never seen one come to a consumer from a legitimate dealer. If you’re shopping with the ‘hey Buddy, wanna buy a diamond?’ fellow on the street corner then you’ve got some exposure here but with a real merchant the worst case is where the stone has been accidentally switched with the paperwork or may have been damaged since the lab graded it. Mistakes do happen. Most dealers are profoundly embarrassed by this kind of thing and immediately take action to remedy the situation when it happens. It is worth the time to check and, in my opinion, it’s worth using a professional to assist if we’re talking about a significant amount of money. Checking is not a personal attack on the dealer and the dealer should not take it as such, it’s prudent shopping on the part of the customer. Trust, but verify.


Neil Beaty
GG(GIA) ICGA(AGS) NAJA
Professional Appraisals in Denver
 

DBM

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Oct 24, 2006
Messages
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Date: 12/15/2006 8:50:28 AM
Author: denverappraiser

I’ve seen quite a few fake grading reports both from GIA and others but I’ve never seen one come to a consumer from a legitimate dealer. If you’re shopping with the ‘hey Buddy, wanna buy a diamond?’ fellow on the street corner then you’ve got some exposure here but with a real merchant the worst case is where the stone has been accidentally switched with the paperwork or may have been damaged since the lab graded it. Mistakes do happen. Most dealers are profoundly embarrassed by this kind of thing and immediately take action to remedy the situation when it happens. It is worth the time to check and, in my opinion, it’s worth using a professional to assist if we’re talking about a significant amount of money. Checking is not a personal attack on the dealer and the dealer should not take it as such, it’s prudent shopping on the part of the customer. Trust, but verify.



Neil Beaty
GG(GIA) ICGA(AGS) NAJA
Professional Appraisals in Denver
never thought of it that way. ok i could live with that :)
 

scarleta

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Feb 25, 2006
Messages
1,572
Thanks to all that replied to my question. The stone would be shipped to me I have yet to see it.I do have 1 week inspection/ return agreement . The dealer was recommended to me( by someone I have dealt with for many years )and I have not met this dealer , nor did I waste any of his time up to this point just received poor quality faxed certificate.I do appreciate all your points , but in no way did I wish to offend anyone here. Just a bit nervous I guess so I was seeking opinions. Nice to get educated on what''s going on.
Would one take it to independent diamond appraiser?
With the certificate or not? Thanks again..
 

:)

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Jul 25, 2006
Messages
1,864
Hi Scarletta - the fact you could find the report on GIA report check would make me feel better if you were worried - if the carat weight for the report, or the report # was off, then it would not bring up the report (since you have to have both pieces of data for the report check function to work). The easiest way I think for a consumer to also try to make him/herself feel better is to just have the person weigh the stone in front of you and look at that carat weight to confirm it is the same on the report you are being shown and then check the whole thing on the GIA report check- I would think it would be hard for someone to fake a gia report for a stone that had the exact same carat weight as a legitimate one - it would take a lot of effort - the carat weight would have to match up with a legitimate report # that the person trying to ''fake it'' already knew existed. I would imagine the effort would be so enormous it would probably wouldn''t be worth the time to the person. I would still take it to an appraiser to confirm after the purchase, but I would do that no matter whether concerned about a faked report or legit!

When I talked to EGL USA previously (inquiring about cut parameters that define their grades of cuts), the woman I spoke with actually brought up the possibility of faked EGL USA reports and recommended checking on their website their reports and if nothing comes up to then contact them.

If really worried, you could also loupe it to confirm that the inclusion plotting matched up, but the carat weight would probably be easier for people not used to seeing inclusions!

We did have the experience early on in our search where a vendor was showing us a stone (in a nice part of town), and my fiancee noted an obvious dark inclusion on the table which was not marked on the report. The vendor had xeroxed copies of the reports instead of the hard copies, and seemed very upset when we brought it up (not at us, at the person who gave him the report and stone)- he had the stones he was showing us on a broker type of basis and he was upset that the person who gave them to him had given him the wrong report or the wrong stone for the report. I think the guy really didn''t do it intentionally, but it made us just uncomfortable enough that we did not return to his store. Again, if you have a good return policy you can just confirm it with an INDEPENDENT appraiser (not someone who will try to sell you their stones after knocking the stone you just bought).
 

scarleta

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Feb 25, 2006
Messages
1,572
Thanks for that , I could take it to EGL and let them do an independent appraisal for me.Thanks so much..
 

CaptAubrey

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 28, 2004
Messages
863
There have been a few isolated cases of GIA (and other) reports being counterfeited, but it''s a tough thing to get away with for long. The major lab reports all have a lot of built-in security features to prevent counterfeiting. Only consumers who aren''t savvy enough will get fooled, and like stone-switching and other forms of outright fraud, it''s something you can get away with a few times but never long enough to make it worth the risk.

Plus, a lot of these crooks aren''t too bright about it. The last scandal I can recall involved fracture-filled diamonds, which everyone knows GIA does not issue reports for.
 
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