FOOD & BEVERAGE

FOOD & BEVERAGE                                            

FOOD & BEVERAGE

food beverage alcoholThe profits of the underground industry producing counterfeit beverages and foods has been estimated at $49 billion a year. In addition to the more high-profile issue of counterfeit alcohol, other highly counterfeited foods include coffee, vanilla extract, maple syrup, apple juice, honey, milk, and olive oil. Some food items are regionally significant, and the location is part of the branding that criminals copy. Dilution of prime brands with inferior products presents a concern as well.

This type of counterfeiting, because the product is ingestible, is considered a worldwide consumer safety issue. Undisclosed adulterations, particularly faced by a consumer with food allergies, could lead to dire consequences. Legitimate food purveyors suffer errant product recalls due to consumer safety concerns or see a decline in their brand’s reputation as a result of a bad counterfeit product experience, permanently damaging the brand in the eyes of that consumer.

Food tampering and counterfeiting have completely discredited China’s production of baby formula and its consumers seek out products that are produced abroad to keep their babies safe. The trouble is that counterfeiters then copy the packaging of the other countries to exploit the price difference. If there are criminals willing to poison baby formula, your product needs protection from Stardust.

Geographic food specialties are quickly becoming globally recognized brands like Champagne and Parmigiano. Legislation helps the brand owners preserve the value of the name. However, without a way to authenticate the origin, it’s impossible to separate the real from the fake. More commonly, valuable time is wasted as large shipments sit idle at world’s ports of entry awaiting verification, and the ability to quickly authenticate products and shipments of goods marked with Stardust can increase the flow of goods and reduce the potential of spoilage.

CONSUMER GOODS, ELECTRONICS

CONSUMER GOODS, ELECTRONICS

CONSUMER GOODS, ELECTRONICS

The Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) estimates that counterfeiting costs U.S. semiconductor manufacturers $7.5 billion a year in lost revenue and U.S. workers nearly 11,000 jobs. Blacktopping or resurfacing of integrated circuits (IC) removes crucial information that allows identification of the OEM, and counterfeiters are highly proficient at this activity. While it is possible to detect these efforts, it requires forensic analysis using expensive lab instrumentation to see the embedded circuitry.

Stardust can protect the OEM marks from counterfeiting and simplify the entire process with a field-ready device yielding instantaneous results. Our technology changes the burdensome detection of counterfeits into a seamless process of accepting inventory or checking before installation of parts. Our marker can be integrated directly into the original component marking or as part of a post OEM certification of quality. Incorporating our technology into the manufacturing process allows for crucial components to be validated by government buyers and sets your supply apart from antiquated alternatives that can be copied and passed off as valid.

In addition to ICs, even the simplest components are susceptible to faking. For example, our technology addressed authenticating counterfeit capacitors within manufactured equipment used in the medical field. Tolerances and quality determine the functionality of the circuits that use these components, where a small change in the parameters can spell disaster for the manufacturer and certainly for the patient.

ACCESS CONTROL

ACCESS CONTROL                                                  

ACCESS CONTROL

access control event tickets IDs

Large events, exclusive parties, concerts, public transportation, and building entry present a serious challenge for controlling access. Conference and entry badges, parking permits, parking receipts, tickets and transportation vouchers are a prime target to be faked and abused. Establishing unmistakable, covertly marked, access control documentation protects from not only a loss of revenue, but also from endangering life with the threat of violent criminal intent and terrorism looking to bypass security checks.

Identification and identity theft are more common, and the barriers to fakes are often lower than one would expect. Stardust provides an industry leading technology to covertly mark these documents for easy detection and authentication as well, even though less secure measures developed by others are currently being utilized. Stardust is a member of the Document Security Alliance.

OIL & GAS

OIL & GAS                                                                    

OIL & GAS

Shady fuel franchise practices, fuel adulteration, smuggling, and excise tax fraud are just a few of the serious threats facing consumers and affecting national economies and energy companies’ revenues worldwide. Stardust provides comprehensive solutions and security to supply chains threats which cost governments and private companies more than $100 billion per year internationally.

Stardust’s unique global business model, integrating both strategy and technology to solve counterfeiting and diversion issues in a variety of industries, has made us an industry leader, whose methods have been called on by Fortune 500 companies, government agencies, and international organizations. It’s also allowed us to implement these solutions in multiple high-security scenarios with innovation and flexibility.

Stardust achieves its security objectives through direct marking that:

  • Introduces a covert security marker without adding any steps to the manufacturing process;
  • Enables instant, repeatable authentication, with no lab testing required. Time is money, and the effort to both introduce and detect the marker for authentication purposes is nearly imperceptible;
  • Anyone in the process can be empowered to authenticate or investigate, eliminating the need for a third party or antiquated auditing and paperwork;
  • Demonstratively links any required paperwork directly to the marked commodity.

We’ve developed a proprietary testing method that allows incredibly low concentrations of our marker to be detected with our field ready testing device. Our detection apparatus is highly portable, can communicate with your cell phone, and enable data to be uploaded to the Cloud or a server, and is extremely reliable.

Our fuel integrity programs ensure that your oil and gas be free from adulteration, commingling, diversion, and tax evasion issues, greatly reducing risk for both the consumer and your bottom line.

AUTOMOTIVE, AEROSPACE, DEFENSE

AUTOMOTIVE, AEROSPACE, DEFENSE

AUTOMOTIVE, AEROSPACE, DEFENSE

Some estimates place responsibility directly or indirectly of up to 20% of road accidents on counterfeit automotive parts. From fan belts to brakes, airbags to alternators, the impact can be annoying or sometimes even deadly. Every few weeks, entire shipments of fake parts are found at customs ports across the globe, and the catch is just the tip of the iceberg.

In January 2010, the Department of Commerce Bureau of Industry and Security published the Defense Industrial Base Assessment: Counterfeit Electronics report, which showed that in the period from 2005 to 2008 the number of reported counterfeit incidents had nearly tripled. This is a sobering reminder of the risk to our national security and the safety of our military personnel, who rely upon the performance and integrity of their highly sophisticated electronic equipment. Supply chain protection is a key component of Operational Security that Stardust provides.

According to the Department of Defense, the definition of counterfeit, as it relates to electronic parts and components, includes both outright fakes and previously used parts. These used parts are refurbished to look new and unscrupulously sold as such. When sold as new, these used components present a significant risk to circuit operations, as they are far more likely than new parts to experience reliability and performance failures when deployed.

Long-term maintenance of equipment that is expected to have a multi-decade lifespan presents a significant challenge to Operation Security, as counterfeiting efforts of hostile governments can intentionally sabotage and greatly impair the mission capability.

AGRICULTURE, FERTILIZER, PESTICIDES

AGRICULTURE, FERTILIZER, PESTICIDES

AGRICULTURE, FERTILIZER, PESTICIDES

Technological advances and globalization have helped the spread of counterfeit pesticides and fake seeds blossoming into an illegal worldwide industry that threatens both the lives of consumers and the livelihoods of farmers.

Counterfeit and diluted fertilizers waste an entire growing season before discovered and can leave production well below the expected harvest. Expensive GMO seeds are impossible to differentiate without laboratory testing, leading to not only the loss of entire crops, but also wasted production resources and labor. Diluted pesticides require more frequent application and diminish the protection quickly. Packaging for seeds, fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, and soil amendments are all soft targets for counterfeiters, with sometimes even legitimate packaging being reused and resealed to move fake product.

Stardust Materials directly marks seeds, pesticides, and fertilizers providing an inextricable link between the marker and the product. Our premier markers enable vendors and even farmers to easily and quickly reveal substitution and dilution, and authenticate both the packaging and the product. When legitimate packaging is re-used or replaced, our technology provides the capability to identify the tampering and alert for further investigation.

In most cases, fakes placed on the market come in consumer-ready packaging, often indistinguishable from the genuine to even legitimate manufacturers. These low-priced agricultural knock-offs may market themselves as the actual product, or a less expensive alternative, but the risks are very significant. For consumers, the danger lies in their untested, unregulated and sometimes banned, ingredients that can be deadly.

In order to protect farmers and brands from the potentially disastrous outcomes as a result of imposters permeating the supply chain, Stardust has partnered with international organizations, Fortune 500 companies, and world-changing social ventures, all dedicated to utilizing and developing most sophisticated technologies to fight the counterfeiting of crop seeds and agrochemicals.

SECURITY PRINTING, CURRENCY, TAX STAMPS

SECURITY PRINTING, CURRENCY, TAX STAMPS

SECURITY PRINTING, CURRENCY, TAX STAMPS

It is now more difficult than ever to protect national security documents (currency, tax stamps, visas, bank checks, postal stamps etc.). This is due to the ever-increasing level of sophistication of international counterfeiting rings. Stardust protects tax revenues for a number of governments. Our advances in nanotechnology are enabling efficient and cost-effective excise stamp production. No longer are government printers locked into expensive solutions provided by global monopolies with little control over the security in their products. Stardust has developed turn-key solutions that put printers back in control of the client-sought protection.

Stardust Materials offers an array of custom, anti-counterfeiting technologies that enable to covertly protect Government and Financial security documents. From the invention of unique taggants, to in-house designed readers and metameric “color shift” pigments, our strategies, technology, and solutions have been proven successful time and again in our work with international governments.

Our range of protected documents include:

Visas Liquor tax stamps Passports
Tobacco tax stamps Bank checks Drivers Licenses
Food stamps Postal stamps Currencies

Pharmaceuticals and supplements

HEALTH & BEAUTY                                  

HEALTH & BEAUTY

The pharmaceutical industry has always been one of the most sought-after industries for counterfeiting and diversion. Aided by modern global communication and transportation infrastructures, pharmaceutical counterfeiters have become increasingly sophisticated and truly global, resulting in the rapid rise of counterfeit prescription drugs everywhere in the world including the United States. These counterfeit drugs often go unreported or unnoticed, creating a significant public health concern, as safety and efficacy of these medications are highly questionable.

Counterfeit pharmaceuticals can contain toxic or contraindicated ingredients, unknown to patients and their healthcare providers. They may even be devoid of the important life-saving formulations that patients require to treat their specific ailments.

It is for this reason that numerous large pharmaceutical companies rely on Stardust anti-counterfeit and anti-diversions technologies (both covert and overt) to protect their formulations and their consumer’s interests.

Nutritional Supplements have become a multi-billion dollar industry. The assertions on the packaging are only as good as the security that protects them. Vitamins, weightless, nutraceuticals, wellness, probiotics and others can be packaged or substituted with inert or worse, dangerous ingredients. Distributors may also violate their territorial arrangements, undercutting authorized retailers. We can protect packaging with a variety of novel covert and overt features to prevent counterfeiting and to reveal the bad actors in your supply chain.

In 2009 alone, EU custom officials seized approximately five million body care products. The toxic trade in counterfeit Skin Care and Cosmetics products is driven by the desire for luxury brands at a low cost. But these fancy fakes pose a very real danger to consumer health and safety because they come in direct contact with, and can be absorbed into, the skin. This is especially dangerous because the actual formulations of these counterfeits are untested and unknown.

That’s why numerous skin care and cosmetics companies rely on Stardust anti-counterfeit and anti-diversion technologies to protect their formulations, ensure customer safety, and instill consumer confidence in their purchasing decisions. Stardust is an industry leader in covert, machine-readable anti-counterfeiting and brand protection solutions.

Construction

CONSTRUCTION & BUILDING MATERIALS

CONSTRUCTION & BUILDING MATERIALS

Building materials are often overlooked for traceability solutions due to their low cost, sheer volume, & their abundant availability to consumers. However, this is precisely what makes these materials susceptible & very attractive to counterfeiters, who will copy well-known industry brand names to help move inferior products.

Unfortunately, material defects & safety hazards derived from inferior products labeled as genuine, are only discovered years after installation, when failures surface. By then, the damage is done.


Gypsum board
(drywall) can be made from defective materials, whose barrier may not resist even the slightest amount of moisture, leading to hazardous with mold growth. Also, it may not meet required fire ratings, resulting in negative consequences.

Cement that is missing a crucial ingredient , which inhibits corrosion, or aids in curing, will look identical to correctly mixed product. An inferior or missing additive can lead to catastrophic consequences down the road. Bolts are usually marked with grades, indicating quality & appropriate application. Low-quality metals with high-quality marks which are then used in applications that can’t tolerate failure is a recipe for disaster.

Wiring & Electrical equipment require quality control to ensure proper materials are used for safety & health concerns, but manufacturers in developing countries take advantage of weak links in the supply chain to sell degraded, inferior, & dangerous materials. Sometimes, new regulations ban the use of certain materials, but manufacturers may still try to offload leftover inventory.

Lumber contains various additives for protection against moisture & wood destroying organisms. Brand owners can protect themselves through direct supply chains, but, with global markets expanding & consumer demand increasing for specific applications & imported woods (e.g. bamboo, cork, walnut, rosewood), traceability becomes essential.

Stardust provides a necessary, comprehensive solution & capability to mark, trace, & authenticate building materials through supply chains, with little to no disruption to the product flow. The ease of use & the amount of time & effort saved by implementing Stardust direct authentication solutions are not only viable, but essential when attempting to control the quality of bulk materials.

Polymers and recycled materials

POLYMERS & RECYCLED MATERIALS

POLYMERS & RECYCLED MATERIALS

Advances in polymer science are often characteristics that are invisible and enhance value. With Stardust, your IP and products are protected from unscrupulous actors, integrating seamlessly into your existing processes, simplifying authentication and auditing, and empowering any member of your organization to participate in supply chain investigations.

Removing the need for laboratory testing, Stardust’s security solutions empower brand owners with the most cost-effective, time-efficient, secured means of direct product traceability available in the industry, to authenticate materials, and even their content. In addition, the polymers used in consumer products are an ideal material for covert marking to aid not only with traceability, but also anti-counterfeiting.

Stardust developed security solutions as simple as altering plastic cases used to protect and to authenticate valuable collectables. We’ve also developed and implemented security solutions for more complex problems in global manufacturing to protect against adulteration of virgin material with inferior and less expensive ingredients, incorporating finely tuned investigative tools that do not inhibit the flow of goods.

Recycling and Upcycling polymers

As the world becomes more conscious of the danger and negative impacts of plastic waste in our environment, ecosystems, and specifically our oceans, there is a significant push to replace non-degradable plastics, while recovering and upcycling plastics already produced.

Upcycled plastics command a higher price on the market in general, and this designation and claim of use is easy to abuse and deceive both consumers and brand owners without direct product traceability. Stardust simplifies the complexity of global supply chains and creates verifiable certainty, allowing brand owners, materials suppliers, and even consumers to investigate what is, and what is not, in their products.

Covertly marking of materials, whether virgin or used, can occur either prior to or during processing and ensure that, as materials pass from recycler to compounder to manufacturer and, eventually, to a retailer or consumer, they maintain their compositional integrity. Stardust provides the ability to demonstratively claim whether a product is 100% specific polymer, 100% upcycled plastic, or any fraction in-between.