Security Holograms

Understanding Security Holograms


Uses for Security Holograms
Security Benefits
Why Holograms are Considered ‘Secure’
Choosing the Right Level of Protection
Fully-Custom Holography
Short Run and Fast Delivery – AuthentiBrand Inc.® Security Holograms
Security Label Options
Hot Stamp Security Holograms
Diffraction Material


Uses for Security Holograms:
Security holograms have become well-established in many industries and are commonly found on a host of products and packaging, including compact discs, computer software, cosmetics, watches, and sporting goods. Other security uses include clothing hang tags, certificates (automobile registration, fine jewelry, etc.) tickets (concert, sporting event, etc.), passes (ski lift, back stage, etc.), and many kinds of identification and membership cards You probably have a security hologram in your pocket…there has been one on every VISA® and MASTER CARD® produced for the past twelve years! DOVID’s also grace federal currency and passports in countries such as Austria, Bulgaria, Finland, Kuwait, Switzerland, and Russia. In the United States, you’ll find high security DOVIDs on driver’s licenses in many states, as well as on postage stamps and a variety of government issued bonds and certificates.

Security Benefits:
The decision to integrate a security and authentication system into your organization’s product line or printed documents is a positive marketing step as well as a prudent economic choice. According to IHMA1, when properly carried out, the system should accomplish all of the following:

  • Assure your customers that the product is genuine and will perform according to specifications
  • Increase or preserve sales by reducing the sale and use of counterfeit products
  • Enhance the visual appeal of the product or document and its packaging
  • Make exact product counterfeit more difficult and unlikely
  • Provide potential forensic information for prosecution
  • Establish defensive evidence against possible defective product and negligence claims.

For a printed item, such as an identity card or document with intrinsic or exchange value:

  • Ensure that only the correct individuals carry the item or document
  • Ensure that only genuine items or documents are in use
  • Make counterfeiting more difficult and unlikely
  • Provide potential forensic information for prosecution

Why Holograms are Considered ‘Secure’:
Holograms belong to a class of images known as Diffractive Optical Variable Image Devices (DOVIDs) and are rapidly becoming the quintessential method of protection against counterfeiting. Highly valued for security, DOVIDs can only be produced using expensive, specialized and technologically advanced equipment. They cannot be replicated by color copiers, computer scanning equipment, or by standard printing techniques (analog or digital )since they are governed by different physical properties (holograms diffract light whereas print reflects it). Given that counterfeiters inherently select the path of least resistance, encountering a security hologram will frequently cause them to abandon their efforts to copy your product and move on to easier targets. As a result, the use of hologram security devices virtually guarantees product authenticity.

Overt and Covert Protection:

All AuthentiBrand Inc. holograms employ a combination of overt and covert security components. Overt DOVIDs are visible to anyone and everyone who views them (no special experience or equipment is necessary to see the image and/or information contained in the DOVID). Covert elements can take many forms, from highly secure machine readable authentication to proprietary graphics which can be identified only by a trained eye.

Choosing the Right Level of Protection:
The importance of adding security features to a product or document depends upon the magnitude of the potential loss. Simply adding a hologram to your product will not prevent counterfeiting, but it significantly ups the ante for the counterfeiter. The security a hologram provides is to some extent tied to the complexity of the image, and since not all products need the same protection, Authentibrand produces DOVIDs in varying security levels. The required level can be determined by examining several factors, including actual or perceived product value, cost (in money or breach of security) if your product is bootlegged, and the likelihood that a counterfeiter will go to extreme lengths to copy both the product and its DOVID authentication. A useful analogy might be: to determine the height of the fence needed, you must consider whether its purpose is to keep school children from trampling the flower patch or to thwart professional mercenaries hired to steal your gold!

Fully-Custom Holography: Fully custom holography involves the design and creation of unique, proprietary images in three dimensions. However, with set- up costs starting at $5,000, fully custom holograms can only become cost effective in volume orders around $10,000. Standard delivery for fully custom projects is 4 to 6 weeks, though some rush projects can be accomplished in under a week, please contact us immediately if your project has a due date less than 4 weeks away.

Short Run and Fast Delivery AuthentiBrand Inc.® Security Holograms: We’ve found that there are an extraordinary number of businesses that would benefit from the use of security holography, but whose budgets cannot accommodate the high tooling costs or longer lead times of custom security holograms. AuthentiBrand Inc. was created to address these issues. AuthentiBrand Inc. keeps over a million holograms in over a hundred designs ‘on the shelf’ for shipments as fast as ‘same day’. The following section describes a variety of customization options offered by AuthentiBrand Inc.. The prices are shown on the security label ordering and pricing page.

AuthentiBrand Inc. offers a wide range of stock security images created using state of the art holographic techniques. When employed correctly, our stock security holograms provide the same functional level of security as fully-custom images, but at a fraction of their cost. For most projects, AuthentiBrand Inc. customized stock security images offer an unbeatable combination of perceived authenticity and value.

AuthentiBrand Inc. uses state of the art laser technologies when creating stock security holograms. Each image has certain unique features which make it visually exciting as well as difficult to copy. Even images which look simple are actually created using highly complex techniques, many of which are proprietary to the lab in which they were created.

AuthentiBrand Inc. Security Levels
For projects where our custom holography is not viable due either to cost or time constraints, AuthentiBrand Inc. offers three unique levels of security: custom etched stock hologram images (where your ad copy or logo is added as a diffractive element), overprinted stock (where your ad copy or logo is printed on top of the stock image hologram of your choosing), and ‘off the shelf’ stock which is a substantial ‘step up’ from no-hologram and is excellent for lower-security requirements. All AuthentiBrand Inc. security holograms offer a high level of perceived authenticity and value for small fraction of the cost of low-run fully custom projects

Security Label Options: Following are a number of the specific techniques employed by AuthentiBrand Inc. to customize and further authenticate security hologram labels.

Custom Etching and Overprinting
Customizing images through etching or overprinting offers great flexibility within a hologram authenticity program. Whether you begin with a stock or fully custom hologram, the addition of etching or overprinting allows multiple uses of the same image, for instance you may wish to have multiple departments dates or dates while employing a single hologram image.Custom etching is a sophisticated and powerful way to customize the look of an image, whether stock or custom. For a one-time set-up cost (generally around $1,500), we will etch your logo or ad copy into the holographic master shim, so that each hologram has your message showing as a 2D surface graphic.Customized Overprinting adds your logo or ad copy as an overprint color (generally black or white) for a very low set up cost and an added running charge.


Tamper Evident

Tamper Evident (T.E.) labels describes products that in some way show ‘evidence of tampering’ if removal is attempted (as long as the original application was to a smooth, clean, and dry surface). If the T.E. label is removed, the remaining portions that come off will be invalid and / or unusable.

Tamper Evident hologram labels are excellent if your product can be out-dated or canceled after issue (such as ID cards). Without tamper-evident protection, the label could be removed and applied intact to a counterfeit product. AuthentiBrand Inc. offers a number of Tamper Evident solutions depending on the specific project requirements

Sequential Numbering
Sequential numbering, available on orders of 1,000 images or more, appears in black on top of the hologram in sizes of 1/16″ or 1/8″. Consecutive numbers can serve a variety of purposes, such as product tracking, inventory control, and multiple uses of a single stock hologram.

Special Die Cutting
AuthentiBrand Inc. stock security holograms are provided on rolls as kiss-cut square or round labels ready for hand application. However, many images can be die-cut in varying shapes and sizes for an even greater level of customization.

Cutting a label can be a complex issue and deserves special attention. For automatic application, the accuracy of cutting and uniformity of the repeat down the web is critically important. The prices in this catalog all assume that labels will be applied by hand. Please advise your AuthentiBrand Inc. sales representative if the project will require machine application and they will provide a job-specific quote. All labels are supplied with acrylic pressure sensitive adhesive.

Hot Stamp Security Holograms
AuthentiBrand Inc. offers a full range of options for custom holograms in hot stamping foil, and AuthentiBrand Inc. offers a number of ‘off the shelf’ registered and continuous security hot foils for shorter run requirements. Please email your specific requirements and we will have one of our specialists contact you with further information.

Diffraction Material
These low cost alternatives that some companies refer to as ‘holograms’ are not, in fact, dimensional holograms at all. Rather, these ‘holographic diffraction patterns’ are generally available ‘off the shelf’ through thousands of non-security graphic supply sources worldwide. Though AuthentiBrand Inc. offers cost-effective imprinted diffraction labels for advertising and promotion, the use of our AuthentiBrand Inc. Stock Security options (listed below) offers far superior security at a similar cost to the diffraction pattern option. If you are interested in our diffraction label line, please email a request for our complete Diffraction Label Catalog.