I agree with most of the comments but if they can overcome the inherent stability weakness of DNA to heat and UV light (which will be tricky), the biggest problems will be the cost of sending 'suspect' components for forensic analysis and the time it will take to get a definitive result from the DNA Lab. What do you do in the meantime, stop production, twiddle our thumbs, take a risk?
Also, because of the stability issues with DNA, there is the additional risk that a Distributor could be wrongly accused of selling counterfeits, due to the 'absence' of the forensic signature.
But they could be innocent and as the DNA could have faded away naturally (due to heat/humidity/exposure to UV light) but how would a Distributor prove that they're innocent?
The damage would be done, I'm afraid and that's why I'm wary about recommending this DNA based system and I'll be interested to see how the field trial goes.
Now, if they could produce a totally robust form of DNA style system that could be analyzed in the field, well, I have a few customers that might be very interested.
I agree 100% with you Cryptoman, this "chip in a chip" approach like Bruce stated clearly is obviously not a solution to the counterfeiting problem, it is way too advanced, complicated and expensive for that.
As advanced as the supply chain is, are they saying it is impossible to track where these chips come from? Everyone know where anyway, but is it that impossible to track how they get into the chain? Someone somewhere knows what to do but is not doing it.
I see this approach more as a preventive measure against something bigger mentioned.
The solution to counterfeiting, is simple in the NDAA 2012 act.
@HimanshuguptaThat would be the obvious solution but not neccesarily a feasible one. In a 'global village' cotext it is simply impossible for any country to be totally self sufficient and with fabs scattered all over the world and deliberately because of cheaper labour in some areas. The US has to still rely on products coming in from this locations, so splitting the process will seem the only way they can stay on top of the situation.
"Is it cost-effective for all kinds of manufacturers to use this technology to prevent counterfeiting?"
The solution may not be cost-effective, but the whole point is to find way to fight against counterfeiting. I think researches are being conducted to find a better solution, and DNA tagging is just the (current) state-of-art solution, but not necessary the cost-effective one.
In the US, at least, the military has been trying to use more off the shelf products to reduce its costs and increase compatibility. Any counterfeiting solution, even if its was developed for the DOD, has to be used by commercial manufacturers as well. Having two separate supply chians--the old model--will just add redundancy and cost. I'd expect to see a battle on this front (pun intended).
Planting chips in semiconductor devices does seem to be an effective solution. Any idea about the cost of these chips? Is it cost-effective for all kinds of manufacturers to use this technology to prevent counterfeiting?
I think you're right about the higher costs @arialla and @hospice-houngbo. But if the IARPA is underwriting the cost because of the national security threat for military chips, then the commercial sector will benefit. Still, I imagine that a 'split manufacturing' approach to building chips will introduce higher costs because it adds extra steps and more complexity to an already complex process.
EBN Dialogue enables and encourages you to participate in live chats with notable leaders and luminaries. Not only editors and journalists, but the entire EBN community is able to comment and ask questions. Listed below are upcoming and archived chats.
Thailand Stages a Comeback Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Microsoft Surface: Potential Winners & Losers What are the implications for the electronics industry supply chain of Microsoft Corp.'s decision to launch its own tablet PC? Join industry veteran and EE Times' systems and OEM expert Rick Merritt on Tuesday, July 3, at 12:00 pm EDT for a Live Chat on this subject.
Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Peter Drucker famously said "Trying to predict the future is like trying to drive down a country road at night with no lights while looking out the back window." Yet in the razor's-edge world of electronics—with a lean supply chain and just-in-time demands—the need to know the future is vital.
You've heard the saying "the No. 1 supply chain risk is your people." That hasn't always been the case. But today's complex global supply chain requires a new type of multitalented employee. It's one who understands, finance, marketing, economics, is savvy with technology, graceful with relationships and can think analytically.
Where are these people? Are universities properly preparing the next generation supply chain professionals? How do train your existing workforce for these new, demanding positions?
Brian Fuller, editor-in-chief of EBN, will lead a 60-minute Avnet Velocity panel discussion that will ask and answer these and other questions swirling around today's supply-chain talent challenges.