The question we pose today is, ‘How can you tell if something is real?’
A pretty profound question for a Monday morning, but we aren’t going to dive into the Matrix red-pill rabbit hole discussing the nature of reality, but rather to round up some of the most infamous forgeries and discover how technology could help in detecting and preventing forgery and fakes. In the same way, E-Sign’s new technology can secure and ensure that all your important documents carry authentic and legally-binding signatures.
Donald Trump’s “Renoir” masterpiece & other fake art
The 45th President of USA may have some questionably authentic characteristics himself; the fake tan, fake hair, fake Inauguration crowd sizes etc but it turns out he may not be that great at spotting fakes. This month Vanity Fair reported that he proudly displayed a Renoir painting on his private plane and later in his lavish penthouse in Trump Tower. The only problem was that the painting in question, Two Sisters on the Terrace, has been hanging in the Art Institute of Chicago and had been there since 1933.
Not all art forgeries are so blatant, many art forgers operate in a secretive world of private collections and exclusive auctions, allowing them to build a huge portfolio of fakeries. In 2015 Wolfgang and Helene Beltracchi were sentenced for selling over £28 million in fraudulent artworks, imitating over 50 artists.
With fake after fake being discovered the trust in of ‘connoisseurship’ (the idea that experts can get a sense of authenticity by sight) is declining. New technologies like 3D stereomicroscopes and spectrometers are being brought in to remove the guesswork from multi-million pound evaluations, recently proving the falsehood of $80 million of artworks, including ones attributed to famous artists Jackson Pollock and Mark Rothko.
If something is valuable make sure you verify it with the best technology available. E-Sign’s electronic signature software creates a digital fingerprint with a randomness of 1 in 62 billion, ensuring no one can fake it.
By John Cooke [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
The fake that tried to change the course of history
Since Darwin wrote Origin of the Species people have been trying to figure out how monkeys became humans, and trying to find the missing link between the two species. In 1912 they found it. A mixture of bones that were too ape-like to be human and too human-like to be ape, were found in a gravel pit in Sussex. The Piltdown Man, as the find became known, was touted as a hugely important discovery, evidence of human ancestors in Britain over 500,000 years ago. For four decades the scientific community struggled to understand the find’s significance and prove its authenticity. Finally in 1953 the Piltdown Man was proved to be a fake by a number of leading scientists, but the identity of the person or people who created the fake has been in question since then.
Modern technologies of CT scans, DNA matching as well as microscopic analysis of the bones have led scientists to declare the creator of the Piltdown Man fake was Charles Dawson (the man who had claimed to find the bones) and he was likely working alone, rather than the conspiracy group of Arthur Conan Doyle and other leading figures as had been theorised.
Proving authenticity quickly and beyond doubt is vital. Rather than taking a century to find an answer, E-sign’s incredible security means that all digital signatures are verifiable, as the E-Sign platform and website are 100% secure via 256bit SSL encryption, meaning your data is protected and your signatures above suspicion.
Legal fakers that tried to save time and ended up serving time
Lawyers should know that forging signatures is illegal. People have been forging signatures since the concept of signatures began, but a couple of recent cases both sides of the Atlantic seem more ridiculous than villainous. Both Nicholas Usiskin, a solicitor in Oxford, UK, and Jose Camacho, an attorney in Florida, USA, forged signatures on legal documents. The careers of both men have suffered (suspension in Usiskin’s case, and being struck off and imprisoned in Camancho’s) but the interesting thing is neither would have gained money from their forgeries. To differing degrees, both were trying simply trying to cut corners, rushing to get work through and getting loose with the truth whilst doing so.
Guess what? It’s E-Sign! Using the highest levels of technological security the e-signature system is legally verifiable all over the world. E-sign associates a signer with a document in a recorded transaction in the format of a coded message through specific Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) protocols. Using PKI E-Sign provides the highest level of security and universal acceptance for the digital transactions of documents. It’s also really quick and easy to use, allowing you to send and track documents efficiently and effectively, making sure no-one needs to panic and take legally dubious short-cuts like these lawyers.Share comments powered by Disqus