Police and special agents of the Chief Rabbinate Kashrus Enforcement Unit have uncovered a startling and deeply concerning counterfeit mezuzah scroll making operation. According to agents involved in the investigation, the counterfeiting operation used a new and sophisticated method to create very high quality counterfeit mezuzahs.
The printing plates used to forge these mezuzahs were created using a new and specially designed software that allows for the modifying of letters in the fake mezuzahs. Until now, the identity of the letters had been the primary method used to determine if a mezuzah was printed rather than written by a sofer (scribe) because if they were printed, all the letters would be identical, which would certainly not be the case if the mezuzah was written by hand.
There is a law in the state of Israel that permits the Chief Rabbinate to oversee the mezuzah industry in an effort to help avoid just such counterfeiting scams. Following the uncovering of the sophisticated counterfeit operation, Chief Rabbi David Lau has reached out to Israeli Justice Minister Tzipi Livni to map out a strategy towards monitoring the industry amid the realization that today’s counterfeiting techniques allow counterfeiting of an alarming high quality in the STaM (Sifrei Torah (torah scroll), Tefilin and Mezuzahs) industry.