Frost & Sullivan: The Need of Reliable Documents Demands Ideal IDs

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Frost & Sullivan: The Need of Reliable Documents Demands Ideal IDs

In our modern society, citizens are required to provide a reliable identity proof when travelling, interacting with governmental agencies or accessing sensitive information. In the past, identity documents (ID) were paper based, consisting of limited information with a poor security level. Nowadays, most ID documents are becoming electronic, plastic cards with or without an associated chip.

Frost & Sullivan recent white paper entitled “The Ideal ID Document: The best way to ensure the perfect mix between convenience and long-time security” forecasts that the e-ID segment will rise to 325 million unit shipment globally in 2019. The document also reveals market opportunities and most attractive solutions that perfectly address ID market requirements.

Governments and law enforcement agencies are looking for ID documents that could reach a lifetime of 5 to 10 years. This lifetime is requested for security reasons (to minimize the risk of potential fraud during the issuance process) and to optimize the total cost of investment for the entire ID project. Indeed, to renew or re-issue ID documents could rapidly become costly. “The optimization of the document lifetime is based on constant innovation and improvement of technologies that can guarantee physical, chemical and mechanical durability,” says Frost & Sullivan Global Programme Director Jean-Noël Georges. “The ID document support should also be carefully selected to fulfill requirements of a secure and reliable ID document.”

Different durability and security features are required for various documents. For plastic-based ID documents, different materials could be used as a card body and support to include a chip when necessary or to incorporate numerous security features. The selection of the material is based on two major criteria: the price and the durability. Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) is a low-cost material but can’t support long UV exposure and is sensitive to mechanical stresses, such as bending stress. Intensive mechanical stress could cause micro-cracks to the card body structure. The addition of polyester (PET) increases physical durability of the ID document by reducing certain weaknesses.

“To withstand the test of time, the most valuable support for plastic cards is polycarbonate (PC). This material can provide high performance under physical and mechanical stresses,” states Georges.

Many companies deliver ID documents, but few have the ability to offer high quality. Gemalto has a long history in the public sector and pioneered the polycarbonate ID document. The company recently deployed the Sealys Color in Polycarbonate solution to create a color photo on a polycarbonate support. The German company Bundesdruckerei is involved in the entire secure ID process and developed the Polycore® colored ID method to create color personalization of polycarbonate documents.

Oberthur Technologies has developed an alternative solution named LASINKTM to answer all of the ID document requirements. The firm has decided to integrate an innovative approach to polycarbonate support in order to better answer constraints based on security requirements for ID documents.

In order to facilitate the verification of the ID document and to minimize the time needed during the checking process, a picture is used. Oberthur Technologies creates a picture with a specific texture, which is easily verified without manmade devices. This texture can’t be created using traditional inkjet or retransfer solutions. The picture is sealed into the card body and the matrix used to create the color is a set of particular guilloches that strongly increase document protection.

In this paper, Frost & Sullivan compares the major technical initiatives to provide an ID document that is ensuring the perfect mix between convenience and security.

If you would like to learn more about e-ID segment and/or receive a complimentary copy of The Ideal ID Document: The best way to ensure the perfect mix between convenience and long-time security white paper, please send an e-mail to Edyta Grabowska, Corporate Communications, at Please, include your full contact details in the query.

The white paper can also be found on here

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