Spotlight on Our Security Features

Security Features in Nikuv’s Cards and Documents

The incorporated security features and add-on options we offer our clients are at the heart of our business. To ensure large organizations can stay several steps ahead of counterfeiters and fraudsters, we add layers of cutting edge technology to our products and solutions. In the first of our ‘spotlight’ series, we introduce three important features that Nikuv uses to keep documents secure.

Security Options

Holograms

Holograms are used as a security feature in passports, documents and cards, and are an overlaminate layer with a holographic image embedded into it. They are made using a master hologram that requires extremely specialized and expensive equipment to produce, and it’s this feature that makes them very hard to forge or replicate. A standard hologram is a great feature on its own, however where there are more complex requirements it can be upgraded with micro text printing into the hologram, which provides an enhanced level of security.

Ghost Images

You will be familiar with ‘ghost images’ from certain ID cards, where a small version of the main photo usually appears on the side of the card. Specialized software is used to create and add the ghost image to the card during printing. This is a simple and cost-effective process that adds a fantastic safeguard against fraud, which is difficult to reproduce and is an essential feature in all modern security cards.

Ultra Violet Print

Ultra violet, or UV, printing is another fundamental security measure that is incorporated into the production of passports and documents nowadays. Printing with florescent dyes onto a UV dull substrate surface allows documents to be layered with images, designs and wording that is invisible to the naked eye in daylight. When placed under a UV light source, the ‘invisible ink’ glows to reveal often impressive and intricate embedded images. This is a front-line measure against counterfeiting that Nikuv works with as standard.

Passport Security: An Ongoing Challenge for Governments

People are on the move. The International Civil Aviation Organization reported that over 3.1 billion people traveled by air to various destinations around the world last year. Governments must juggle the tasks of providing a hospitable and efficient travel environment in order to attract tourist dollars while at the same time ensuring the safety of its citizens and borders. This makes efficient yet accurate and safe passport security a high priority for government agencies.

New Security Measures

In response to various security incidents worldwide, including threats and terrorist attacks, such as 9-11, the international travel organization made several recommendations and requirements for more secure passport documents. Biometrics became the new international standard for fraud-proof passports, but the technology has not been universally accepted. The electronic chip seems to be the most palpable and is most popular in use and implementation today. There has been resistance to other biometric identifiers such as retinal scans, facial recognition and fingerprints due to privacy issues and concerns.

family checking in at airline counter

Evolving Technologies Create Challenges to Security Systems

However, as quickly as security experts develop the newest secure systems to protect personal passport information, new technologies arise that give opportunities to counterfeiters, terrorists and other criminals to access and use confidential passport data. An example is the smartphone. Each new version of the smartphone contains higher levels of technologies, such that now the fraud-resistant passport can easily be breached by a properly rigged smartphone, swiftly and without the holder ever knowing. Smartphones enabled with NFC (Near Field Communication) are able to read the data contained on the electronic chip within 30 seconds. The smartphone can quickly snap a photo of the passport when it is opened to present to authorities. US passports contain RFID-proof technologies that block access as long as the passport is closed.

The lightning speed with which technology advances and spreads around the world means that governments must remain vigilant and continually invest resources and efforts towards developing the most stringent and state-of-the-art protection & security technologies possible.