Forgery: 'fingerprinting' documents and packaging

Nature. 2005 Jul 28;436(7050):475. doi: 10.1038/436475a.


We have found that almost all paper documents, plastic cards and product packaging contain a unique physical identity code formed from microscopic imperfections in the surface. This covert 'fingerprint' is intrinsic and virtually impossible to modify controllably. It can be rapidly read using a low-cost portable laser scanner. Most forms of document and branded-product fraud could be rendered obsolete by use of this code.