Counterfeiting, tampering or adulteration can take place at any part of the supply chain. Counterfeiters can sneak in at any stage and can make counterfeit copies of the genuine product or can tamper with its packaging and contents. A supply chain is the network of all the individuals, organizations, resources, activities and technology involved in the creation and sale of a product, from the delivery of source materials – from the supplier to the manufacturer, and the final product delivery to the end user.
Organisations and company owners can take the necessary measures to secure their supply chains. Different technology tools can be used as effective solutions to secure supply chains. Since the supply chain encompasses different stages, therefore, it is difficult to individually monitor each of them. Moreover, it is manually not feasible to examine loopholes or any errors in the supply chain.
Of late, different kinds of technologies are being used to secure and monitor supply chains. The amalgamation of IT-enabled authentication technology and holographic authentication technology is being used by companies worldwide. A good example is the use of barcode or QR code technology which not just digitally authenticates the products but also links it with different IT-enabled solutions like track and trace.
Track and trace system is one-of-its-kind technology which helps in tracking and tracing the product throughout the supply chain. The technique provides a unique identifying code (bar code/ QR code) onto each product after it has been packaged. This enables individual products to be tracked from production to the end consumer and helps manufacturers significantly reduce counterfeiting by ensuring products can be easily identified.
Digital authentication through a QR code and barcode take place on the individual product, pack, case and pallet level. Variable and unique QR codes are difficult to copy and thus provide security on each level of the supply chain. Holostik is a pioneer of anti-counterfeiting solutions and provides a range of holographic and digital authentication solutions for securing products and supply chains. Its security holograms enabled with digital authentication solutions help in providing a multi-layered security approach to the product and the company’s supply chain.
Product authentication is important to determine the genuineness of a product. Authentication is a process through which a human or system verifies the originality or duplicity of any product. Authentication is essential to effective security as it equips the user to check the originality of the product. Holostik has been a pioneer in providing its clients unique and secure holograms which are impossible to copy or duplicate.
The holograms work as a unique identity of genuineness. The scanning of the hologram will immediately tell the customer if the product purchased by them is genuine or fake. The holograms reflect a unique identity of genuineness. A hologram can incorporate overt, covert, forensic or digital features for authentication.
However, among the many authentication features the most used authentication feature is digital which includes barcodes, QR codes, RFIDs etc. According to a trade report, “The barcode sector of the technology segment constituted the highest share in the anti-counterfeit packaging market; and is projected to grow at a second-highest rate during the forecast period as it is highly preferred for brand protection in almost all industries but especially in personal care & cosmetics products. This is due to the information and code embossed over the barcode does not allow the covert data to be displayed on the label, making it difficult for counterfeiters to copy. A barcode helps companies to integrate product lines and reduce the total cost of ownership.”
The customer can also ensure the security and validate originality by scanning the QR code using a scanner, sending the display number via SMS, or through the website. The customer can ensure security and authenticate the product by scanning the QR code using a scanner, sending the display number via SMS, or through the website.
In order to understand the overall process of product authentication let’s understand the complete process in detail:
- First, the customer purchases the product enabled with the smart hologram or smart label that has a QR code or barcode.
- At the time of purchase, the barcode or QR code is scanned to check the authenticity of the product.
- Post-scanning, the customer receives the message about the genuineness of the product.
- Simultaneously, the manufacturer also receives the message about the scanning of their product.
Holostik not just provides real-time authentication but also moves a step ahead by equipping manufacturers with the track and trace technology through which one can keep a tab of his or her products in the supply chain. The technique provides a unique identifying QR code or barcode onto each product after it has been packaged. This enables individual products to be tracked from production to the end consumer and helps manufacturers significantly reduce counterfeiting by ensuring products can be easily identified. Holostik’s track and trace systems have been designed to ensure the best print quality and the highest level of efficiency.