New IHMA security image register launched

A new secure registry of holographic images intended to safeguard hologram copyright has been launched by a trade organisation representing the holography industry.

The International Hologram Manufacturers Association (IHMA) database, now called the Security Image Register (SIR), replaces the former Hologram Image Register and remains the only system of its type for the authentication community, according to the trade organisation.

The change has been made to take into account the increased sophistication of holograms, which are increasingly being incorporated and integrated with other optical variable devices (OVD) technologies used for advanced authentication, security printing and anti-counterfeiting.

A key change is that the term hologram has been replaced by OVD in the registry, which has been updated to include a choice of 13 current optical technologies that now fall within a general OVD category.

The database of secure holograms will continue to be operated on behalf of the IHMA by the Counterfeiting Intelligence Bureau under the strictest confidence and security, according to the industry organisation.

The SIR – spanning around 10,000 registrations – will be available to hologram producers, manufacturers of other OVDs, security printers and designers of documents, as well as central government and institutions such as central banks, revenue authorities and passport issuers, through their security image suppliers

It will enable them to verify that their security hologram design, or elements of a hologram design, do not infringe copyright or allow the unintentional copy of existing security holograms. The image registration is completed once the design has received clearance.

The SIR will also be accessible to law enforcement agencies, allowing them to check for the provenance of a design when they need information on a suspect hologram. Moreover, registration of a hologram design with the SIR is increasingly a pre-condition of tenders and procurement, particularly by government bodies such as central banks, revenue authorities and passport issuers, as well as brand owners.

“Over the years holograms have evolved into highly sophisticated security images and new processes have been introduced that are not conventional holograms in the strictest sense,” said IHMA chair Dr Paul Dunn.

“The new look SIR reflects a rapidly changing sector, where hologram technology is increasingly a part of an integrated security to protect brands, profits and people.”

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