The London Bullion Market (LBMA), a key precious metals agency, has accredited AlpVision’s anti-counterfeiting technology as the new market standard.

The technology enables users to use a smartphone camera to determine whether precious metals are counterfeit, through an app called Veriscan. The company will now play a part in LBMA’s Gold Bar Integrity Security Initiative (GBI).

The GBI initiative, launched by LBMA and the World Gold Council, seeks to digitally monitor gold moving trough the global supply chain.

AlpVision’s technology can be used by consumers and industry professionals to determine the authenticity of precious metals. The app can be used on gold weighing between one gram and 12.5kg.

Fred Jordan, CEO and co-founder of AlpVision, says that the app has “extremely high” accuracy with a margin of error of approximately one in 10 million.

Counterfeiting in the precious metal industry

The LBMA accreditation is the “ultimate pledge of trust,” according to Jordan, who hopes that the app will reduce the requirement for expert understanding to confirm whether precious metals are genuine.

Jordan told Mining Technology that: “for the past 50 years when people had a gold bar in order to know if this was really gold you needed professional systems and high-level expertise […] and the difference now is that even if you are not an expert you can get the app and it’s free”.

AlpVision’s technology can additionally be used on precious metal products already existing on the market as it requires no changes to the products surface.

In addition to the technology AlpVision’s Brand Monitoring System allows refiners and industry professionals to access server data to monitor product authentications in real-time. Jordan hopes that this will allow for better monitoring of counterfeit trends across the precious metal industry.

Once counterfeit precious metals are accepted by a dealer, they can spread into the entire supply chain. Illegally- and informally-mined metals are more likely to be counterfeit.