Wednesday May 30 ROCHESTER, N.Y.-- Attention counterfeiters: The world leader in imaging technology and materials science is aiming its digital artillery at you.
Eastman Kodak Company announced the launch of KODAK Security Solutions, a suite of products and services designed to help protect against the growing global problem of counterfeiting and piracy. Kodak's proprietary technologies include new invisible markers embedded during the manufacturing or printing process that can be instantly and reliably authenticated in the field in a way that no counterfeiter can bypass.
Targeting everything from currency to product safety labels, Kodak's technology can help diminish counterfeiting, which is estimated to cost the global economy as much as $700 billion annually because it touches virtually every industry and market. Counterfeiters have access to technologies that can be as good as those used by authentic producers and, according to law enforcement and business trade groups, they are using them to defraud consumers, businesses and governments worldwide on an unprecedented scale.
"Counterfeiting undermines the confidence people have in the products they buy, the medicines they take, and the financial and government systems that help society operate," said James Langley, President, Kodak's Graphic Communications Group and Senior Vice President, Eastman Kodak Company. "Kodak is in a unique position to combat this activity because nobody knows more about imaging and materials science than we do. We are harnessing our experience with specialty materials and the power of our digital technology, delivered through the printing process, to build a virtual fortress that will help the world fend off counterfeiters."
KODAK Security Solutions bring together the resources of Kodak's vast intellectual property portfolio, along with businesses in digital imaging, document imaging, and graphic communications to create a broad portfolio of products and technologies that protect against counterfeiting.
At the highest level of protection, Kodak launches the KODAK TRACELESS System, a forensically invisible authentication technology that deploys a combination of proprietary markers and handheld readers. The TRACELESS System creates items with unique material properties that can only be detected using Kodak's reading technologies.
The TRACELESS System marker materials can be mixed with inks, toners, varnishes and other items for analog and digital printing, as well as paper pulp, plastics, powders, pigments, liquids and textiles. The KODAK System's markers have no affect on the characteristics of the end products or packaging. Users license the KODAK technology under multiyear agreements, and have secure control of the markers, the readers and associated software. This system prevents counterfeiters from duplicating the products or their packaging.
KODAK Security Solutions technologies can be deployed into offset and KODAK digital printing applications. Kodak is already working with customers in a wide range of industries that are affected by counterfeiting, including pharmaceuticals, apparel, cosmetics, identification documents and premium wineries.
Ann Colgin, owner of Colgin Cellars, recognized the value that Kodak's solution could deliver in protecting her super premium vintages, which sell at auction for hundreds of dollars a bottle.
"While Colgin Cellars has not experienced any problems with counterfeit wine, the issue has concerned me for some time. As a vintner and an auctioneer, I felt it was necessary to take a stand and ensure my customers a guarantee of authenticity," said Colgin. "Kodak worked closely with me to quickly develop and implement a solution that met my demanding production schedule. Within 45 days, Kodak evaluated solution options, conducted a pilot test, delivered a proposal, and implemented a solution that protects Colgin Cellars products."
The KODAK Security Solutions portfolio has applications for an even wider range of markets and industries that are being harmed by counterfeiting, such as financial documents and tax stamps, ticketing for lotteries and special events, pharmaceutical packaging, food and beverages, luxury goods, prescription pads and vital records.
In addition to the highly covert TRACELESS System, KODAK security technologies are utilized to implement other hidden features, such as digital watermarks, magnetic ink character recognition (MICR), and a variety of forensic markers. Measures such as these are useful to prevent document fraud via counterfeiting or alteration.
KODAK technologies are also used to create readily visible protections, such as watermarks, variable data printing, micro printing, and raised printing. These solutions allow examiners to perform quick visual inspections without specialized equipment.
"Kodak has a long history of producing sophisticated technologies that are easy for people to use," said Bill Lloyd, Chief Technical Officer and Senior Vice President, Eastman Kodak Company. "Our wide range of innovative security offerings allows us to deliver tailored solutions for each customer at competitive prices. Users can start with simple solutions today and know that there is a Kodak pathway to higher levels of security in the future."
WhatTheyThink is the global printing industry's go-to information source with both print and digital offerings, including WhatTheyThink.com, WhatTheyThink Email Newsletters, and the WhatTheyThink magazine. Our mission is to inform, educate, and inspire the industry. We provide cogent news and analysis about trends, technologies, operations, and events in all the markets that comprise today's printing and sign industries including commercial, in-plant, mailing, finishing, sign, display, textile, industrial, finishing, labels, packaging, marketing technology, software and workflow.