RFID and holograms are two of our favourite technologies, so it's a joy to see them form a double act and get together in one pretty little security device. The result is the world's first hologram-toting IC tag, which arrives in Japan next month courtesy of Hitachi and the printing experts at Toppan.
The hologram element is costly to fake without large-scale facilities, while the RFID data is encrypted and even more difficult to crack. On top of those, the sticker they are rooted to can't be peeled off a product without breaking into pieces.
Sticker to the man
The ' IC Hologram' combines the two technologies with a view to making tracking and verifying the authenticity of a product as watertight as possible. Future applications are likely to include using it to secure batches of medicines, but for now it's going to keep tabs on really important stuff like designer perfumes and handbags.
Toppan says this is crucial as "tens of trillions of yen (£100 billion+)" are lost to counterfeiters every year. More importantly, it reckons it can scoop up ¥4 billion (£19 million) in annual sales of the stickers.