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International Consulting and Investment Company

The Security Enabled Bar Code Scanner

Recent developments in security printing have led to the very real and practical prospect of bar code scanners of essentially the same style and cost as today that will decode invisible serialized marks that contain truly forensic un-counterfeitable elements.

Such devices are not only in our laboratory but have been in commercial use for several years in production environments. The first digital application of SmartDye tm has been in regular use since 2001. The first aqueous ink jet with both SmartDye tm and DNA Taggants has been in use by a Fortune 100 company for more than one year. The system decodes printed marks that are completely invisible to human eyes (under any form of lighting or illumination) and yet contain DNA molecular markers that can be traced back to the time and place of printing or manufacture.

These developments are described on our website: Speeches – “DNA and Optical Taggants in Ink Jet Printers”. It is now our intention to commercialize a low cost, reliable scanner to put this very important development into widespread use.

The application of these Brand Authentication projects is leading next to document security applications. It is now possible to read the security taggants at the moment of scanning for any purpose; logistics, warehousing, and even retail checkout. The combination of taggants, substrates, inks, printing systems and vision devices is complicated but not technically challenging any more. TTG and its client PhotoSecure and DNA Technologies have been making the taggants and successfully selling the DNA Matrix tm for many years. In the last 3 years we have worked together with ink and printer companies to perfect the digital version of security printing.

We anticipate the application of this concept to the lottery and to tax stamp market. As in the drug industry, the ability to track every pill can be tackled with this technology. Combining these technologies with a computer track and trace system and a unique identifier “code” at the unit level has led to system that has an internet look up to know the validity of the drug in milliseconds. And even see the entire “pedigree” after a quick scan.


  • The author assumes that the reader is cognizant of the enormous problem of counterfeit goods – and documents. Many references available if needed
  • DNA Technologies – White Paper –Pharmaceuticals:
  • “DNA and Optical Taggants in Ink Jet Printers” A speech presented to several security organizations by Wendell Smith – available on website
  • SmartDye tm fluorescent dyes – PhotoSecure Inc.
  • Drug Industry Coding System –