Fake microSD cards are offered in brands and colors similar to or same as real ones, and they even appear to have large storage capacities. In this analysis, we will tell you how to detect them.
People ask me for recommendations on processors, computers, and daily technology items. However, it was in early November 2020 that a person asked me about the price of a 1TB microSD memory (that’s roughly 1000 Gigabytes). I answered that a microSD of that capacity costs between $170 and $220 on Amazon, and because it’s expensive, it’s difficult to find it in local stores. In fact, a time ago, I bought one of the two high-quality 1TB microSD cards that I actually know (November 25, 2020). It was the SanDisk Ultra (see Amazon) for $179. The other microSD is from PNY brand (see Amazon).
The person sent me an image of the memory they were offering. It was a 1TB HUAWEI microSD priced at $50, which is ridiculously cheap. For you to compare, that’s about the price you pay on Amazon for a 400GB SanDisk brand.
I replied that the price was too good to be true. In general, between stores or manufacturers, the price can vary between $10 or $20, but never by $130. I knew that HUAWEI is not a manufacturer of microSD memories and, also, in October 2018 it launched its own memory called Nano-Memory Card (see NM Card on HUAWEI site) as an alternative to microSD cards. Even the memory was likely to work, but at a much lower capacity, for example, 16GB or 32GB.
Now, I summarize some recommendations to detect if a microSD card is fake or not.
The appearance of fake microSD cards
This image comes from wish.com and shows a HUAWEI 1TB Class 10 microSD, which means it’s pretty fast.
If you look carefully you will notice tricks that scammers use to make people fall:
- They use a recognized brand. But as you already know, HUAWEI doesn’t make microSD cards and has its own type of cards: Nano-Memory Cards, which are different from microSD in size (they are smaller) and do not reach capacities of 1TB (up to the date). See
- Although many manufacturers use names or “cool” words to attract attention (Ultra, Mega, Evo, Extreme, among others), scammers will show you long and exaggerated descriptions, telling you many times that the product is 100% original, new, updated or of the year. In the image, words are shown in the description, looking for people to find all the characteristics they want. See
- The price is ridiculous. The image shows a 1TB memory at $15, which is just impossible today. See
- The other clues may be more absurd or obvious, but we summarize them anyway: yellow letters with a red background to buy 4 1TB microSDs together; and generic adapters or accessories, with descriptions in other languages or not related to microSD. See and
This image shows a fake where the appearance of the microSD is practically the same as those manufactured by SanDisk.
This is the real SanDisk microSD sold on Amazon.
The capacity of fake cards
In addition to worrying about the visual appearance of the fake MicroSD’s, we must pay close attention to the capacity. Unfortunately, scammers are always perfecting themselves, even falsifying the capacity that the card shows when connecting it to our phone, camera, Nintendo Switch, or computer.
The problem is that the scammers modify the capacity of the card, so when you connect it, it looks like a normal microSD, with the same storage capacity that it shows on the outside, for example, 512GB or 1TB.
These cards really have 8GB, 16GB, or in the best of cases 32GB capacity, and when we start copying data to it the following will happen:
- There will not be enough space to store our data, so it will start to be overwritten. The dummy memory is modified to replace the data as soon as it fills up so that it will appear to be of really large capacity.
- Poor quality cards are too slow and frequently lose data. They will show errors or crashes when loading videos, pictures, or video games.
Some programs help us determine if a memory really has the capacity it indicates, for example, H2testw is one of the most popular, but honestly, I don’t recommend that you get to this point, why? Because it means that you already get the card. Even scammers may offer you to test microSDs with fake apps to show you that the card is genuine. In other words, avoid buying a fake microSD by all means.
Finally… to avoid being scammed with fake microSD
- Buy only from reputable stores or websites. Of course, check customers’ comments and ratings, distrusting if they are too few or say that the product and seller are the best. A common trick of scammers is to create fake users to buy their own products or simply leave positive feedback to make you fall for it.
- Check if the card brand is really from a microSD card manufacturer and also if their cards reach capacities of 512GB or 1TB. As of November 2020, only two good-quality 1TB microSD cards are found on Amazon: SanDisk and PNY. Even if it is about these brands, check the comments, ratings, and be wary because there are copies of all kinds.
- Not all microSD are fakes, but there are a lot of poor quality ones. Avoid unknown brands or generic memories. Personally, I currently recommend two brands: SanDisk and Samsung, playing it safe with anyone. In the next post, we help you get the best microSD for Nintendo Switch, although it would still help you if you need it for a phone, camera, or another device.
- Finally, avoid any offer that seems too good to be true.