How do you spot a fake £1 coin? The seven tell-tale signs

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The Royal Mint says there are 30million fake £1 coins in circulation - here's how you tell the genuine from a dud.

"Counterfeit-proof": The Government says this new £1 coin will be the most secure coin in circulation in the world

A flood of fake currency has prompted the Royal Mint to release a new "counterfeit-proof" £1 coin.
But how do you spot one?
There are estimated to be in excess of 30million fake pound coins in circulation.
It is illegal to use one and the Royal Mint says you must hand them in if you think you have been given one.
Depending on the quality of counterfeit, it can be difficult to tell the difference between a real and a fake £1 coin.

But there are a few key things to look out for:

1. The date and design on the reverse should match. It is changed each year and you can see a list of dates and designs here

2. Poor or missing lettering on the edge of the coin

3. The edge of the coin is uneven in depth

4. A coin which has been in circulation for some time but still looks shiny and golden and shows no sign of age

5. The colour does not match genuine coins

6. The Queen's head or reverse design look indistinct

7. Alignment - hold the coin with the Queen's head upright. Turn it over. The design on the other side should also be upright - fakes are often skewed

One coin expert believes although the number of fakes in circulation is increasing, they are getting worse.

"Quality is definitely dropping and fakes are now quite obvious, even to the untrained eye," Garry Day told the BBC.

"The workmanship isn't what it used to be and most are pretty easy to spot. People just need to know what they are looking for."

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