People tend to like the U.S. Postal Service. In fact, a 2020 survey by the Pew Research Center showed that 91 percent of American adults held a favorable view of the Postal Service—a full 10 percent more than reported favorable views of any other agency. Some government officials call the Postal Service the “most trusted agency in the nation.”
Yet for years, counterfeit stamp-makers have been defrauding this agency of the funds it needs to provide public services. In response, the beloved Postal Service has recently changed its rules about mail marked with fake postage.
These rule changes aim to reduce both incidences of fraud and the amount of funds wasted on delivering mail marked with fake postage.
The Postal Service is self-financing, which means it generally receives no federal funds for its operating expenses. Instead, the agency relies on the sale of “postage, products, and services” to fund the processing of over 421 million pieces of mail each day.
So when counterfeit stamp-makers enter the market, they not only deprive the Postal Service of necessary funds, they constrain the Service’s limited resources and, according to Chief Postal Inspector Gary Barksdale, undermine the “sanctity of the mail.” Furthermore, these counterfeiters seek delivery services without payment, which constitutes fraud.