Counterfeit Charts & Publications

Counterfeit products pose a danger to the safety of vessels and crews.

In March 2016 the United Kingdom Hydrographic Office (UKHO) issued a reminder to mariners of the dangers posed by counterfeit ADMIRALTY products in response to an increase in the number of counterfeit versions of ADMIRALTY charts and publications in circulation.

Counterfeit charts and publications pose a danger to the safety of vessels and crews. They are often very hard to identify as counterfeit – even with a genuine version and a counterfeit version side by side, but the information in the counterfeit version may not be up to date and pages of publications may be missing.

The carriage of counterfeit documents is against the law in all countries that have signed the Berne Convention (the vast majority of countries) and authorities in those countries have the power to seize counterfeit documents.

Guide available

The UKHO has taken a number of preventative measures, including a new watermark on paper charts. These measures are outlined in the ‘Guide to Identifying Genuine ADMIRALTY Products’. Recently updated, the guide contains visual examples and explanations to help to distinguish official ADMIRALTY charts and publications from counterfeit versions.

Report concerns

Anyone with suspicions over the authenticity of their ADMIRALTY charts and publications is encouraged to contact the UKHO by emailing