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U.S. DoD considers RFID to eliminate fraudulent electronics parts

The U.S. government is considering an RFID solution to safeguard the U.S. defense electronics supply chain from substandard and counterfeit electronics. RFID Global Solution, Inc., a leading provider of asset management and supply chain solutions, will demonstrate a potential supply chain authentication solution at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Demo Day at the Pentagon next week.

A 2012 Senate Armed Services Committee report on counterfeit electronic parts in the DoD supply chain found counterfeit parts to be a widespread problem. Faulty or fake components present a critical risk in military systems, electronics systems and sensors, where a malfunction of a single part could endanger missions and lives.

“Our Visi-Trac application for DARPA SHIELD enables real-time authentication of components on a worldwide scale,” said Diana Hage, Chief Executive Officer of RFID Global Solution, Inc.  “We are excited to be on the ground floor of such a monumental and important initiative.”

DARPA awarded a $12.3 million contract to Northrop Grumman Corp. and its partners for the agency’s SHIELD (Supply Chain Hardware Integrity for Electronics Defense) program in 2015. SHIELD aims to stop counterfeit electronic parts from entering the supply chain by implementing an authentication solution consisting of a miniaturized chip called a dielet, under development by Northrop Grumman, and software to validate the authenticity of electronic parts, being developed by RFID Global Solution.

DARPA Demo Day offers U.S. military and Defense Department (DoD) personnel the opportunity to see demonstrations of DARPA’s latest research into breakthrough technologies for national security.

RFID Global Solution, under contract from Northrop Grumman, has led the development of an enterprise-class electronics parts authentication application. If successful, the technology would help provide a secure, scalable authentication solution suitable for global rollout to commercial and defense electronics manufacturers and their customers. The SHIELD program aims to eliminate counterfeit parts at a fraction of the cost of today’s manual processes, and will transition to commercial release in 2019.

With the SHIELD program, DARPA wants to develop dependable and inexpensive technology which will provide unprecedented levels of assurance against recycled components that are sold as new; substandard components sold as high-quality; parts marked with falsely elevated reliability or newer dates of manufacture; low-quality clones and copies that may include hidden functionality; components that are covertly repackaged for unauthorized applications, and unlicensed overproduction of authorized components, DARPA officials say.

SHIELD uses the latest advances in 14 nanometer integrated circuit technologies for producing the world’s smallest and least expensive anti-tamper/counterfeit detection technology.

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