MoD agency explores ‘novel security features’ for banknotes

Written by Sam Trendall on 3 October 2019 in News
News

Government seeks input on possible new methods of protecting currency

Credit: PA/Mike Egerton 

The government is seeking “innovative ideas” for new technologies and methods that could help make banknotes more secure.

The Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA), which is part of the Ministry of Defence, has issued a challenge seeking researchers or companies that can submit an “innovation outline” for new ways to protect paper currency.

“Banknotes employ a range of overt features – such as holographic foils or optically variable coloured inks – to aid public or retailer authentication,” DASA said. “The Bank of England is now looking ahead and inviting ideas to develop novel, security features and print technologies for consideration for potential use in future generations of banknotes.”


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The challenge is seeking technologies that are simple for industry and citizens to use and can communicate easily with other systems, as well as being hard-wearing and “difficult to counterfeit or simulate”. Ideas put forward must also be “compatible with high-volume printing techniques… [and] suitable for integration into a banknote design”.

The government is looking for existing products or ideas “at any level of maturity”. It is not interested in planned research, or any development related to technology already in use such as “holographic foils, lenticular lens features, or optically variable inks”.

“Public confidence in currency is directly related to the ability of the user to accurately and quickly authenticate a banknote,” DASA said.

Submissions are open until 31 March 2020.

 

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Sam Trendall is editor of PublicTechnology

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