The Top 12 Ways to Tell a Fake Rolex from a Real One

3. The Secret Crown

Beginning in 2002, the Rolex company began adding a tiny, almost-invisible crown logo onto the watch’s face—specifically, micro-etched at the 6 o’clock position into the crystal that covers the watch face.

It looks like a hologram or an etching, but it’s not etched and it can’t be seen by the naked eye. It’s actually in the glass – little bubbles in the glass that form a crown. To see it, use a flashlight app on your phone. Place the phone light on the phone the 12 and the LEC (laser etched crown) will pop out.

Because of the process and equipment involved in adding this etching, as well as its minute size, fake Rolexes will not have it. This is hard to see with the naked eye, so either look very closely or have the jeweler or seller show it to you with magnification.

4. The Backing

Except for some very rare and discontinued pieces from the 1930s, no genuine Rolex watch has any markings, engravings, or writing on the underside of the watch. Often, scammers prey upon people not realizing this little detail, so they engrave all kinds of things there, including very convincing replicas of the Rolex logo.

But there is never anything on the backing of a genuine Rolex watch. This is one of the key differences between the real and the counterfeit.

Additionally, Rolex backings are never clear. The backing has to be removed to view the movement underneath. If you can see through the backing of your watch when you flip it over, it’s a fake.

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