2 Big Disadvantages of Anti Counterfeiting Solutions using QR Code
Article by: Chekkit
Have you ever seen a bottle of wine or medicine pack with a QR code and wondered if those good-looking square images can really stop someone from making a fake version of the product?
If you have, you’re in good company. That’s the biggest concern most brand owners have when deciding which anti counterfeit solution they should go for..
Before we go further, it’s important you understand what QR codes are. They are basically 2-dimensional images that can hold a lot more data than the normal bar codes. What’s really great about it is how well it provides a “Quick Response” when scanned.
To answer the first question, let’s divide QR codes into two broad sections;
- Regular QR Codes;
When scanned, they lead to a URL (website). These are commonly used on marketing materials (flyers, business cards, merchandise, billboards, etc) to drive traffic to a website or engage the people scanning. Most of the QR code generators you see online are for regular QR codes
- UID QR Codes;
UID simply means Unique Identity. As the name implies, these codes carry a unique identifier and are the type used in anti-counterfeiting, track & trace, and tagging of physical or digital assets.
- Create a Closed Engagement/Verification Loop
Encrypt the QR codes so that they can only be read by specific apps you choose. With this method, a consumer will have to download the app from their app store or visit a website to use the web app. This way, you can control how your codes are verified and easily spot codes that are not on your database.
- Monitor & Flag Suspicious Activities
After implementing a closed loop and encrypting your codes, another important step is to set up a system that monitors the number of times these codes are being verified and where they are being verified from. Automatically comparing and analyzing these data can automatically help you spot instances of possible counterfeiting and prosecute those distributing the fake products. In the pharma world, this is a very important part of pharmacovigilance
- Use Technologically Advanced Packaging Materials
You can use technologies like taggant inks to print the QR codes themselves or the labels. Such materials can be read by special hand-held devices and are great for verification at ports, brand agents, and government agencies. An example of such materials is taggants which are basically coded ink.
Using any of the extra security measures listed above with your anti-counterfeiting QR codes will greatly improve its reliability but to really get a fully secured system, it is advisable to use all 3 security measures at once.