The use of integrated anti-counterfeiting technology against fake products

The value of global counterfeiting has reached to trillions of dollars. Not just developed nations but also the developing countries are facing the problem of fake products. Counterfeiting leaves a negative impact on the government exchequer, company’s profits and the consumers. In the past few years, government authorities and companies are taking stringent measures against counterfeiting.

E-commerce giants like Amazon and Alibaba have initiated anti-counterfeiting measures to deter counterfeiters from selling fake products on their platforms. Governments across the world have also implemented strict laws to deal with counterfeiters and their chain of networks. We regularly come across news from different parts of the world about the seizure of counterfeit or fake products by authorities.

The growth of counterfeiting has drastically changed the use and implementation of different anti-counterfeiting technologies. As forgers and counterfeiters use more sophisticated technology to copy the product and its packaging, it has become imperative to use new measures against them.

The integration of different anti-counterfeiting technologies is gaining immense popularity amongst manufacturers and other stakeholders of the supply chain. The fusion of holography along with digital authentication has made products highly secure against the threat of duplication. Holostik is a renowned name in the field of anti-counterfeiting technologies.

We believe in constant R&D and innovation to stay ahead of counterfeiters. Our smart security holograms and security labels are the perfect examples of integrated anti-counterfeiting solutions. In these anti-counterfeiting products, we have collated the efficacy of OVD with the prowess of QR/bar code.

Acting as a double-edged sword against counterfeiting our integrated solutions provides a two-level of authentication, making it highly impossible to replicate our features. Today, we are providing a wide range of anti-counterfeiting products and solutions to more than 10,000 clients in 75+ countries. If you want your products to remain safe from the problem of counterfeiting then call us on +91–785-785-7000 or mail us at connect@holostik.com.

Bengaluru police nabs four men for selling fake Ayurvedic medicines

The Central Crime Branch Police in Bengaluru have nabbed four persons who were allegedly selling fake Ayurvedic products across the city. They used to target senior citizens for selling counterfeits. The arrested persons are namely Virupaksha, 40, Santosh, 30, Deepak, 31 and Vinayaka, 27 all residents of Yeshwantpur. The accused were operating a medical center called Siddi Ayurvedic Medicine from where they sold fake Ayurvedic medicines.

They would pretend as joggers and visit parks in the morning to befool the senior citizens suffering from back or leg pain. They would fabricate false stories about how their family members had similar ailments and were cured after getting treatment from Siddi Ayurvedic Medicine. Thereafter taking them into confidence they would take them to the center and coax them to buy fake medicines.

Police also said that they had recovered around Rs 6 lakh cash from them.

The police also said that multiple rackets are operating across the city that lures the victims and then sell their medicines to them. If the patient or a relative agreed to buy the oil, one of them would visit the family the same day and prepare the oil using herbs, coconut oil, flowers and other ingredients bought by the victims. Once the oil would be ready, the man would ask one of the family members to accompany him to the store where they had to pay a huge amount of money to buy the fake medicines to be added to the oil.

 

Source: TOI

Police arrests man in Pune for selling fake products

Of late, the Pune Police conducted raids on three godowns located in Gokul Nagar ad the Katraj-Kondhwa Road and seized fake detergent powders, soaps, toilet cleaners, floor cleaner, face creams, hair oil and air fresheners- worth Rs 16 lakh. The police conducted raids based on a tip-off and arrested a man for selling fake items under branded names. The accused has been identified as Raghavji Ravriya (30).

As per the police officials, the products were marked with labels of popular brands. As per the police, they were supplied to several shops, who sold them to many people.

The police is also looking out for Ramji Mahadev Patel (42) who was allegedly involved in operating this business. The accused Ravriya, Patel and their accomplices are from Kutch in Gujarat. They had taken godowns on rent in Kondhwa around two years ago and were selling fake products since then.

The police has lodged a case under sections 420 cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property), 468 (forgery for purpose of cheating), 471 (using as genuine a forged document or electronic record) and 34 (acts done in common intention) of the Indian Penal Code and relevant sections of the Copyright Act. Later, Ravriya was produced before the Cantonment Court, which remanded him to police custody.

Source: Indianexpress.com  

The challenges faced by manufacturers due to counterfeiting

There has been a sharp rise in the number of fake products across the globe. Counterfeiting is impacting consumers, manufacturers and governments. Almost every industry is affected by the problem of duplication. According to a joint report by KPMG and FICCI the counterfeiting business us going to become $1.90 -$2.81 trillion industry by 2022.

Organizations are trying their level best to counter the threat of duplication. The added costs in fighting fakes comes as an extra burden. Besides the company facing duplication has to deal with poor brand image which often takes years to build.

Let’s discuss some of the negative impacts of counterfeiting on manufacturers:

Loss of sales revenue and profit margins: No wonder, a good amount of sales is synonymous with the growth of the company. The sale of duplicate items leads to a drop-down in the sale of a company’s products. If it goes unchecked, then it can lead to a complete downfall of the company. Due to multiple sale locations of the product, it is quite hard for a company to trace the manufacturing location of counterfeits.

Poor brand and product image: No wonder, the sale of counterfeits lead to a tarnished image of the brand and its products. The sale cheap fakes lead to a false perception among consumers regarding the quality of the product and the brand. Unaware consumers often think that they are buying original products but instead, they receive fakes.

Added cost on fighting fakes: Companies have to incorporate different strategies for fighting counterfeiting of their products. This comes in the form of added costs for the organization already facing the problem of duplication.

Counterfeiting causes losses worth billions of dollars to the global economy. However, with the help anti-counterfeiting solutions manufacturers can fight the menace of duplicate products. Holostik is an industry leader in providing the best anti-counterfeiting solutions as per the client’s needs.

How wide web films play an important role in packaging?

Packaging plays an important role in protecting and promoting the product. Marketing gurus consider packaging as the first communicator of the company. In the last few years, flexible packaging has become highly popular in different industries. Flexible packaging products are not just durable but also offer ease of transportation. Among the many flexible packaging solutions, holographic wide web films offer both safety and security.

Holostik is one of the leading players in providing holographic wide films. The presence of holography in wide web films helps in the prevention of counterfeiting and tampering. Holographic wide web films are available in many sizes and can include different security features. Holostik has been providing holographic wide web films to different industries.

Holographic wide web films are available in PET (polyethylene terephthalate) (minimum thickness 12 microns) and BOPP (biaxially oriented polypropylene) (minimum thickness 20 microns). The films are known for their self-adhesiveness, clarity, quality, and shine. Special care has been taken by experts in making the product compatible with international standards and the latest market trends.

Some features of Holostik’s holographic wide web films are as follows:

  • Attractive looks with optimum clarity.
  • Shiny and glossy with high brightness & high gloss holographic effects.
  • Superior bonding strength heat resistant and waterproof.
  • Available in different colors and patterns, Plain, light beam and patterns. Many designs are available for selection and customer designs.
  • Used for toiletries, tobacco, flexible packaging, printing, wine boxes, gift boxes, books, magazines, boxes, printed products, and other paper products laminating. suitable for high-grade imitation and pseudo carton laminating.

Holostik steals limelight at SCM Pharma Summit in Mumbai

Holostik which is one of the pioneers of hologram manufacturing and anti-counterfeiting solutions in India displayed its wide range of packaging and anti-duplication solutions at SCM Pharma Summit in Mumbai. Considered as one of the biggest events on supply chain management in Pharma industry, the exhibition took place from 24th to 25th September 2019 at the Westin in Mumbai.

SCM Pharma Summit is India’s biggest event for supply chain management in the Pharma industry. The summit aims to highlight the strategies, practices, and tools in place to enable organizations to boost their supply chain procedures and achieve a competitive advantage with a special focus on digitization. Designed keeping in mind the current trends in the industry as well as strong research, the conference promises to be a single platform for decision-makers as well as influencers to learn, meet, interact and explore opportunities to grow the business.

The event was visited by important decision-makers from the top and middle management of the pharmaceutical, nutraceutical and supplement industries. At the two-day event, Holostik displayed its latest anti-duplication solutions at the event which included security holograms, security pouches, holographic wads, shrink sleeves, security labels, wide web films and much more. The company also displayed its cutting-edge IT-enabled supply chain management solution which not just secure the products and supply chain but also help in the monitoring and management of supply chains.

Mr. Dewakar Mahendru Assistant Vice President, Solutions Business, Holostik also showcased an intriguing presentation on the ‘importance of blockchain in supply chain management’.

The integration of holographic and digital technologies against counterfeiting

Counterfeiters and forgers are using new technologies to make flawless duplicate products. They do not just make the fake product look visually similar to the genuine ones but also copy their packaging and branding. This often makes it tough for retailers and consumers to identify them.

The production of counterfeits is further boosted by poor regulation and the involvement of organized criminals. However, with the development of anti-counterfeiting technology, it has become quite hard for forgers to imitate your products and sneak into your profits. Different kinds of anti-duplication technologies (overt, covert, forensic and digital) are being used nowadays to secure products and supply chains. Of late, anti-counterfeiting technology experts have combined the holographic and digital technologies together to prevent counterfeiting.

Taking a cue from the same Holostik has developed advanced security holograms and labels integrated with digital barcodes and QR codes. Holostik has emerged as an industry leader in the field of anti-counterfeiting technologies. Besides securing products against duplication the company also provides a gamut of supply chain management solutions.

Moving a step ahead in product authentication, Holostik has amalgamated the power of security holograms and QR code in a single security instrument. While security holograms are meant for physical authentication, the QR code is used for digital authentication along with a host of other IT solutions which include track& trace, inventory management, reward management, etc. The biggest advantage of this impeccable combination is that even if a counterfeiter is able to copy one technology then he will not be able to copy the other.

Holostik believes that in today’s market different anti-counterfeiting technologies are not competing but are complementary to each other. Taking a cue from this the company offers a combination of physical or holographic security and digital security which serves as the best anti-counterfeiting solution against the menace of duplication.

The rise of counterfeit consumer electronics industry in India

In India some of the most popular markets for counterfeit electronic products are Nehru Place and Ghaffar Market in New Delhi, Manish Market and Linking Road in Mumbai, Hong Kong Bazaar in Hyderabad and Kasimedu street in Chennai. In fact, tier 2 and tier 3 cities are flooded with fake and cheap grade electronic products in abundance.

According to reports, the counterfeit electronic products market is growing twice as fast as general goods. There are numerous news reports and studies which point towards the growing fake consumer electronics industry.

An article by Quartz cited a report according to which every one in three Indians has received a counterfeit on the e-commerce space. According to the report, the largest share is that of mobile and computers at 45% followed by TV and other electronic products.

There are two different types of counterfeit electronics products available in the Indian market. The first type includes a completely fake product (not manufactured by the original component manufacturer but has laser markings). The second type is known as a partial fake product (manufactured by the original component manufacturer but are remarked to show different functions). In this type, the counterfeiters use fake packaging instead of remarking the product.

To tackle the onslaught of counterfeit products in the electronic sector the Department of Electronics and Information Technology had notified ‘Electronic and IT Goods (Requirements for Compulsory Registration) order in the year 2012 under compulsory registration scheme of Bureau of Indian Standards.

The order maintains that no person shall manufacture or store for sale, import, sell or distribute goods which do not conform to the Indian Standard specified in the order. Although the order has proved to be a big milestone in curbing counterfeiting, still there are measures that need to be followed strictly to completely eradicate fake electronic products from the market.

For example, organizations must strictly use different anti-counterfeiting measures to prevent any possible form of counterfeiting or tampering. Integrated anti-counterfeiting solutions which include a security label or a hologram along with a QR code helps to track and trace the product in a supply chain. In addition, the integrated solution also helps in instant product authentication.

To know more about our anti-duplication solutions for consumer electronics call us on +91–785-785-7000 or mail us at connect@holostik.com.

 

How product packaging can be made impeccable in context of security

Product packaging is an important step in ensuring maximum safety of products from tampering, theft and other forms of counterfeit. A coordinated and secure packaging framework coupled with a reliable track-and-trace system is key in supply chain security.

In a world of digitalized logistics and e-commerce, the physical security of products is no longer a supplementary layer of protection but a necessity.

Counterfeiters today operate on a larger scale than ever before, with entire factories featuring advanced technology focused on creating perfect copies of products provided by well-known brands or manufacturers. Trusting the entire supply chain security to a supposedly strong legal framework and the precaution of consumers is simply not a good strategy.

A sound supply chain security strategy would involve a proactive approach in implementing technology that allows manufacturers to track their products throughout their distribution chains and a packaging system that makes it impossible for counterfeiters to tamper with the products or replace them with cheap knockoffs within the legitimate supply chain.

Authentication solutions

Authentication in packaging is usually achieved with sealing and holograms. Depending on the level of security required, sealing and holograms could have advanced security features such as pressure-sensitivity, customized tamper-evident fracture patterns, a blacklight verification system, and machine-readable entrenched code.

These are sometimes heat-sealable and may be applied directly to product containers using induction seal technology, making it tamper-proof. Multiple films may be applied to form a single holographic seal that provides a high level of defense to containers or bottles.

Nano-optical technology

The use of nanotechnology in product packaging highly elevates the unlikelihood of counterfeit interference and solves the many limitations associated with synthetic packaging techniques.

Managed microstructures and nanostructures on technologies such as holograms offer features such as water resistance, heat stability and tamper-indicative change of color that cannot be reversed.

Tamper-evident packaging systems

Tamper-evident packaging systems may include solutions like wide-web films, holographic shrink sleeves, and security pouches. The tamper evidence feature maintains product integrity by preventing repacking or reselling of the items.

Figure: Example of a shrink sleeve

Shrink sleeves are a leading packaging application in industries such as food and beverages, cosmetics and detergents. These are heat-sealable and conform to the shape of containers making it harder to tamper with. Tamper-evident shrink sleeves come with microstructure holographic authentication for advanced security.

Figure: Example of a wide web film

A wide web film is a holographic film with a characteristic design covered securely around a product or product container. To open the container and remove the product, the film must be cut or torn.

These holographic laminated films offer a completely non-invasive solution to prevent any sort of tampering and are used extensively for flexible packaging. These films vary in thickness and may come in PET (12 microns) or BOPP (20 microns).

Security pouches provide external tamper evidence and can be combined with the internal seals for double security. These usually involve rotogravure printing technology and the highest level of optical security features.

Tamper-evident packaging systems take the high-security value of nano-optical and holographic authentication solutions and combine it with high-quality printing and materials for a secure and appealing protection solution that increases product security and enhances the brand value.

For more on shrink sleeves, security pouches and wide web films, click here. To find the ideal product packaging solution for your business, click here.

The Role of Anti-counterfeiting Technologies in Securing Supply Chains

From knock-off fashion accessories to fake mobile phones, automotive parts and pharmaceuticals, counterfeiters manufacture and sell inferior goods using another company’s trademark, brand name, logo or appearance. Benefiting from rapid developments in technology, these organizations use sophisticated means to duplicate items, making it quite difficult for customers to identify the true source of the products they purchase.

Counterfeiting is a serious crime punishable globally by fines that may run into millions of dollars and imprisonment of up to 20 years. Despite this, the counterfeit industry continues to cost the world economy hundreds of billions of dollars each year.

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), an intergovernmental economic organization for world trade, estimates that trafficking in counterfeit products accounted for USD 250 billion in 2007⁠⁠ — approximately 1.95% of international trade. According to the International Chamber of Commerce, counterfeiting was a USD 600 billion business in 2011, amounting to 5% – 7% of global trade.

In a March 2019 report, OECD stated that trade in counterfeit and pirated goods has risen steadily in the last few years, even as overall trade volumes stagnated. According to the estimates, counterfeit trade currently stands at 3.3% of global trade.

Counterfeiting organizations are often linked to other organized crimes such as drug cartels, money laundering and exploitation of child labor. Even as law enforcement agencies increase efforts to shut down the illicit business, statistics point toward continued exponential growth in the sale and manufacture of counterfeit goods worldwide.

The need for effective risk management in the supply chain

  • China is estimated to account for 78.5% of the total counterfeit market, and along with Hong Kong, continues to be among the biggest origin countries for pirated goods.
  • Footwear, clothing, leather goods and electrical equipment are the top product categories targeted by counterfeit organizations.
  • Counterfeit and pirated products continue to follow complex trading routes, targeting certain intermediary transit points in supply chains, especially in countries where ports are not secured.
  • In 2016, up to 6.8% of EU imports comprised of counterfeit and pirated products. This amounts to as much as €121 billion.

Although it affects every product category, counterfeiting is more accentuated for businesses with a globalized supply chain. Supply chain management at large corporations can involve hundreds of links with each of those susceptible to intrusion by counterfeit organizations.

Counterfeit items can enter legitimate supply distribution chains at a number of points — the various component manufacturers, suppliers of raw materials, offshore assembly units, transportation, and even the retailers.

If not checked for quality, sources, proper delivery and authenticity throughout the supply chain, high-quality products may get replaced by cheap knock-offs at any point most convenient to counterfeiters.

As laws differ in countries, a manufacturer could potentially leave their product open to counterfeiting at any point in the supply chain when they target a market in a developing country. The market is characterized by businesses working with governments to reduce counterfeit trade. Preventive measures such as penalization, customs laws, and civil remedies work to some extent but fail to significantly reduce the problem. Often, in developing countries, regulatory authorities are ill-equipped to correctly identify original products from fakes.

There is an undeniable need to develop a far-reaching strategic approach to counter such criminal efforts with a multidisciplinary response and the active participation of a wide range of actors, each with their own expertise and specific areas of work.

The role of technology may offer significant contributions to step up deterrence and curb counterfeiting. The two most common technological solutions that companies employ are product authentication and track-and-trace systems.

Product authentication

Authentication methods allow customers to identify whether the products they’ve purchased are genuine or counterfeit. This usually involves assigning security holograms, QR codes and unique numbers or patterns to each product after the final quality check at the manufacturing unit. Scanning the unique code on their smartphone allows the customer to verify the genuineness of the product while informing the manufacturer about its successful sale. Security holograms for authentication can be found on nearly all credit and debit cards.

Track-and-trace systems

Track-and-trace systems are designed to help manufacturers identify faults in their supply chain. As the name suggests, these systems allow manufacturers to track product journey along the entire supply distribution chain from the production unit to end-customer, and customers to trace the products back to their original source.

Smart QR codes (in the form of labels or holograms) are assigned to each product. These are then scanned at every link in the supply chain using either specialized devices or smartphones. Failure to scan the right code on the right product reflects immediately in the supply chain database and allows the manufacturer to identify the point of failure and take appropriate action. This dramatically reduces the chances of intrusion by counterfeit organizations into the legitimate supply chain.

Added benefits

Anti-counterfeiting solutions such as track-and-trace systems allow manufacturers to not only keep track of their inventory at all stages of distribution but also make it easier to manage rewards and build customer loyalty. For more information on this, click here.

Conclusion

Counterfeiting is an exceedingly complex phenomenon. Legal deterrence like fines and imprisonment work to reduce the spread of fraud but do not eliminate it entirely.

With the global counterfeit industry on the rise, companies must take advantage of technological solutions to fight counterfeit. Some of the most effective methods include product authentication methods and track-and-trace systems.

While immensely effective in nearly eliminating the intrusion of counterfeit goods into legitimate supply chains, these solutions also offer added benefits such as comprehensive supply chain management, reward management, and loyalty-building.

For more on supply chain security, click here. To find an ideal track-and-trace solution for your business, click here.