What You Can't See Is What You Get
Published: April 28th, 2009
New infrared tags fight counterfeiting.
By Anastasia Thrift, Managing Editor
Creating the inks, taggants, and readers for a covert infra red (IR) coding solution could strengthen security for pharmaceutical packaging.
Sun Chemical (Parsippany, NJ) has created such a proprietary solution. Verigard centers around small amounts of taggant added to any ink, varnish, or adhesive. All can be authenticated with the company’s proprietary V400 reader. The company says its setup provides an additional level of security.
“It’s a complex algorithm,” says Jim Reiman, manager for brand protection. “Taggant, reader, ink, and substrate are tuned to act as a lock and key for very high security. The V400 uses a sophisticated algorithm to authenticate the Verigard signature in just fractions of a second.”
“We [make] the authentic signature look very specific against the background graphics,” he continues. “With our reader, we can distinguish the same taggant in multiple inks, varnishes or adhesives.”
Sun Chemical keeps control of their taggants and does not ship to third party ink manufacturers. Because the company delivers press-ready ink solutions, it maintains the chain of custody integrity, which can be crucial to avoiding counterfeiters.
“We use the same taggant when we do ink-jet printing,” Reiman says. “We can do that in any conventional print process such as offset, screen, and CIJ.”
Customers won’t have to retool to use the technology. When Verigard is used with ink-jet printers, the unique identifiers are called Vericode. Vericode prints a completely invisible ink-jet mark, which can go over images on the cartons.