(Revised AUGUST 2100)




Page 486, photo 1905 shows 979 Ashtray and 803 Stamp Box

On the left is a "979" Tiffany Studios ashtray and if you read
the listing, this seller runs on about how TiffanyFakes.Com is
in error and his ashtray is the real thing. The real 979 is listed
below the fake in a photo from page 486 of Tiffany Lamps and Metalware (2007) by Alastair Duncan author of numerous books
about Tiffany including Tiffany At Auction, Art Nouveau and
Tiffany Windows
. This seller has contributed to TiffanyFakes.Com before and that is why his/her Ebay name is in italics. The seller
also knows where the "matching floor ashtray and matching floor
lamp with tray are located in upstate New York" and even knows
that these pieces were made for an "old wealthy family in the early 1900s". Cannot wait to see those beauties. If you buy this piece
and return it within three (3) days with a "signed sworn affadivit
with proof" - probably means affidavit - your money will be refunded.
Remember three days. NEW NEWS- Someone cancelled the listing.

The above appears to be a joke but it is a very serious attempt to sell a fake ashtray
for a minimum of $400 and with a close examination of the photo, it is obvious that it is junk.
Who stamped the Tiffany signature and number on it and why is there so much of this type of thievery? Where did the number come from? Someone took one of the old books that show
Tiffany numbers, looked under ashtrays and found a number where there is no corresponding
picture and they are in business. Who would know? The problem is that there are books now
that show more numbers than the old books and then it becomes easy to see what is happening.
If you just take a few minutes to look at the listing you can see the first problem where it
indicates that the item location is Midwest, USA. That is clearly an attempt to hide something
and it is a ploy used by the group offering most all of the fake Tiffany lamps. Read these listing carefully and it will save you the fate of the many people who have lost thousands and
thousands of dollars in these types of scams. Most sellers believe if it is signed, it is real.
This is not true and buyers and bidders need to be aware that there is a group of thieves
out there who sole function in life is to sell these fakes to you.



In an effort to save space and so as not to bore you with constant details about the people
involved in this scheme, we now offer a very shortened story of this fraud. We begin
with 12 to 15 fake and fraudulently signed Tiffany lamps. To this we add approximately 25 different sellers who registered to sell on Ebay and there was not one single honest person involved. At the time in the middle of 2005 year, someone figured out how to register as a
seller on Ebay and at this time Ebay had no checks or balances in place and the philosophy
was, the more the merrier. All that needed to be done was to register any name, any address
and any telephone number and you were immediately a new Ebay seller. The group of fake
lamps were photographed, each lamp about 6 - 8 times and then listed for sale on Ebay.
As soon as listed, we were able to tell that they were fakes and they were placed on the site.
After 3 or 4 had been placed, we began to realize that this was a concentrated effort to steal
as much money as possible in the shortest amount of time. We guess this scam worked for
about 9 to 10 months and what happened was that these lamps were being offered for sale from different locations throughout the US. Several were sold and delivered to the buyers who immediately discovered that the lamps did not rise to the quality of real Tiffany. Attempts were made to contact the sellers who had no interest in hearing from the buyers as they had moved
on to trying to entice new people to pay for these fakes. Sometimes the lamps would not sell
and then they were relisted from another fake location and we began to see the very same lamp
that was photographed on the very same table which told us that it was just a repeat but there
was a new seller name and a new location. The one constant was that any money collected
was to be sent to the Atlanta area, was to be by wire transfer and was to be sent immediately. Shills were used to up the bids and when the shill ended up as the high bidder, no problem
as the lamp would just be offered for sale again or, they would just contact the real bidder
saying that the high bidder did not have the money and how lucky you were to get this
opportunity to buy a lamp at your price. This worked and another lamp was sold and
payment was received. One lamp went to a buyer in the Northwest and that buyer somehow
got in touch with us and pretty soon we were e mailing several who had paid for and received these fake lamps. One was as far away as Paris and the amount lost were averaging about
$20,000 for each lamp. We never could figure out how to stop this scam but one day we received an e mail for someone who said that all one needed to do was place a bid on one of the lamps.
As soon as a bid was placed, the bidder was able to go to Ebay's SITE MAP and click on
FIND CONTACT INFORMATION. At this time this feature was reserved for bidders and since that person had placed a bid, their contact information was received by the seller and the seller's information was sent to the bidder. All that needed to be done was to dial up the listed phone number and if the number was disconnected, you were being scammed. E mails were then sent to Ebay and after 3 or 4 days, the lamp was removed and any record of that sale was gone. When
you could not find any record, you knew that Ebay was behind the removal. The sellers adapted quickly, quicker than Ebay, and they kept the names of the bidders and were able to contact them and offer to close the deal immediately. As unbelievable as this sounds, there were several who fell into their trap and could not wait to get the money in the mail or wire. Again, all of the money went to the Atlanta area. Ebay required no proof of any kind and did no checks on the sellers. There was no PayPal at this time so it was not a red flag that someone wanted to get paid by wire transfer. More and more complaints came into our site and we told all of them to notify Ebay.
Ebay in it's lofty perch did not seem to care and they were almost impossible to get through to them. The sellers continued on and finally a seller in the Northwest contacted the police and they were as hard to deal with as Ebay. That seller eventually got in touch with the FBI and after several weeks, we were notified by the seller that something was being done and the case had moved from the Northwest to the Atlanta office of the FBI. We were contacted by the FBI and
were pleased to sent a packet of paperwork which showed the seller names, their phoney addresses and most damaging, photos of the very same lamps being offered for sale from many differed locations. With this information in hand and the ability to get in touch with Ebay and
the ability to get copies of the wire transfers, the scam was shut down. We have heard from the people injured in this scam and the last news we had was that no one had received any money
back or that any arrests had been made. So much time has passed that we believe the case is probably been closed with not a single arrest. As Ebay has grown, there are some stops in place that would make it unlikely that this could happen again on such a scale. Smaller scale frauds continue to happen almost on a daily basis and it is doubtful that it will ever be stopped completely. No future references to this particular scam will be reported unless we hear that arrests have been made.

There were several things that should have made you aware that you were getting involved in a scam. First and foremost, all of the seller were new to Ebay, all of the sellers have little or no history with Ebay and all of these sellers had little or no feedback. Pay attention and be careful. While the US allows Ebay a lot of freedom and Ebay has prevailed in court case that their defense of "we are just a venue", this is not the case in other countries. Ebay has never done enough to stop fraud so it is up to you to watch for it.





If you are looking at a piece of Tiffany that is for sale and the base is not shown, you are buying in the dark. The finish of the base and the signature are very important and any seller offering a piece of Tiffany without a base picture is hiding something from you. Demand that the base be shown.







The box on the left is a fake but the story about coming from the "high rollers" room at Tiffany & Company is a bigger lie. That story is not an example of provenance.


The seller on the right is a frequent contributor to this site and they always call it Tiffany but in the listing it is guaranteed only to be "100% old and original". Read their feedback.









 For a long time we have preached about buying Tiffany from those who do not accept Paypal.
Some absolutely will not accept it and then there are those who offer a Tiffany lamp which
should sell in the tens of thousands of dollars but refuse to accept Paypal for any item over
$1000 but the starting price is $3000. Normally they accept Paypal and you have got to wonder
why they quit taking it for this item. See that scam coming? If you find an Tiffany item listed
this way, run. In an edition (on line) of Maine Antique Digest, there is an article about a seller
who offered an Indian relic which sold on Ebay. The buyer paid with Paypal and then found that
the item was not genuine. He contacted Paypal and the money was refunded but that is not the
end of the story. The seller continues to believe that the item is genuine and he wants it back.
No way says Paypal. They do not return these items. This is a wonderful way to rid the world of
so many of these fake Tiffany pieces especially those same old lamps that continue to be offered
for sale by the same old group with new names and low feedback and no guarantee. If the reason
they do not accept Paypal is because of the fee, offer to pay the fee as it is very cheep insurance.
Of course, none of this matters if the buyers do not have the piece verified by someone with Tiffany knowledge. Remember that just because it is signed Tiffany, that does not make it Tiffany. Most of these fakes are guaranteed to be signed but not guaranteed as to who signed it A link to this informative article is listed immediately below. Read it and learn.











The student lamp on the left might be correct but the shades on the right were not made by Tiffany.



This is a brand new (09/06/07) name of a seller that is mentioned on another page of this site. You may not be able to bid on their current listings since it appears that after just 2 or 3 days, they are no longer for sale. On other pages they were known as CIRCA1897 and less than 2 weeks before they took that name, they were knows as ARTGAL97. RayRob (now MYGUY58), one of the hanger ons of this group sent an e mail saying that we are wasting out time as they have more names then we can even imagine. Wonder what he is up to? The interesting part of their new listing is that it is the turtleback seen many times before but this time it is (correctly) not called Tiffany in the listing. The base is signed on the bottom but a picture is not shown and the signature is not identified. What's with that? Watch out for this new name.


















For more fakes click here for PAGE 9