Virtual Shielding


Brand authentication and grey market identification

The retail market is moving towards omnichannel models, and, as such, anyone can sell anything, anywhere. As a consequence, it becomes harder to control brand and distribution integrity. While consumers can barely recognize counterfeits, brands need to protect their products and know where they come from and where they are. However, in today's legacy systems with their “SKU-Quantity” based identification, it is impossible to track and trace products on an item level. Furthermore, data are often still kept in silos.


Product authentication ensures that the product is precisely what it is supposed to be. The objective is to provide each product with a secure, counterfeit-proof, unique identity, which is the foundation to quickly and securely authenticate products along their journey. Also, new laws and regulations are in the making, aiming to improve labor conditions, environmental impact, and, finally, the quality of the products. Furthermore, the unique identification of products is fundamental to enabling traceability across the supply chain.

Use Cases

Digital Identity Management

The iD Cloud platform can handle or capture unique, secure digital identities through application programming interfaces (APIs) from third-party identity management systems. If products carry a unique identity, you can consider this a digital replica of a physical object. For example, the Electronic Product Code (EPC), encoded into the RFID tag and printed as a QR code on the label, is a digital identity. In addition, the chip-inherent Transponder ID (TID) and other technologies can be combined for an added security level, e.g., cryptography, digital watermarks, or invisible DNA.

The unique identifier is the access key to the EPCIS repository, where information about each product's place of origin and other data is stored. The iD Cloud platform enables tracking and tracing information about where, when, and how products were made. As the tagged products move through the supply chain, it can be determined if an item originated from the correct source. In addition, when a specific product needs to be verified, e.g., by brand inspectors, customs agents, or even consumers, it is possible to check the authenticity.

Grey Market Identification

Registering the destination of outgoing shipments to validate where EPCs belong.

Business Values

With item-level product authentication, brands and retailers can mitigate risk and maintain brand integrity. By giving every product a unique digital identity, it is possible to keep control of when, where, and how products are produced, where they have been shipped, and in which channels they are sold.