Anti-counterfeit technology: news in brief

Exhange of ideasProduct and technology updates from Nanotech Security, TrustPoint Innovation, Applied DNA Sciences, 3C! Packaging and Antares Vision.

Canada's Nanotech Security has signed a contract with an issuing authority of "a major foreign government" to develop a unique optically-variable security feature to be potentially incorporated into various denominations of polymer, paper-based, and composite banknotes and secure documents. The one year contract is valued at approximately $1m with a renewal option and - once completed - Nanotech will own the rights to the technology. The company is best known for its KolourOptik security feature which secured its first commercial client last year.

Another Canadian company - TrustPoint Innovation - has launched a trial of its web platform - called BlackSeal - which promises to secure Near Field Communication (NFC) tags, prevent tag cloning and enable users to identify attacks and neutralize cloning attempts in real-time. NFC is increasingly being used to allow consumers to engage with products using their smartphones and to test product authenticity. BlackSeal is free to use during the trial period, says TrustPoint. The trial includes a mobile app for subscribers to fully test its functionality including campaign creation, re-direction, writing and reading secure NFC tags.

Applied DNA Sciences has signed an agreement with United Pharmacy Network that will see the latter recommend APDN's anti-theft SmokeCloak DNA system to its 160 members.  The technology generates thick and disorienting fog that wards off offenders and smothers skin, clothing and stolen items with a unique, location-specific DNA marker. "The combination of fog and DNA technologies strikes fear into criminal hearts; deterrence levels soar," said UPN's chief executive Sam Maddali.  APDN said it hoped the deal would help it recruit other member organisations for jewelry stores, pawn shops and other industries.

3C! Packaging will officially launch a new coding technology - called Clear Code - at the Interphex processing and packaging equipment exhibition in New York next month. The system makes use of an industrial CO2 laser, which works with a clear coating by causing a colour change reaction to produce a positive contrast image. "While it was once common practice to laser etch into darker inks, incorporating a large area of dark coating often interferes with overall design," said 3C!. "The technique allows for laser ablation on clear coating … allowing a greater space for design and product information."

Antares Vision - which just completed the 100th installation of its ATS 3.0 pharmaceutical track and trace hardware and software platform and saw sales climb 60 per cent last year - has been short-listed among the finalists of the 2014/5 European Business Awards. The Italian company has also been given a Ruban d'Honneur as the winner of the national BP Target Neutral Growth Strategy of the Year Award, which "recognized [Antares] as the Italian organization with the best international organic growth strategy with outstanding levels of sales, profit and market share improvement."

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