Identification Technology Blog

  • Photo ID Badges Now Play a Key Role with Face Mask Wearing

     Photo ID Badge and Face Mask

    Providing identification badges have always helped organizations maintain professionalism and allow for better security. Now with the developing situation with COVID-19, photo ID badges play a key role in helping identify authorized personnel in a facility, however; these people are now wearing some sort of face covering and are not as easily identified. As of now, at least 36 states have a statewide order that requires people to wear face masks or coverings in some capacity.

    • Businesses

      At a minimum, most states are highly encouraging businesses to have employees wear masks, especially when in settings in which social distancing is not feasible. The CDC recommends wearing a cloth face covering “as a measure to contain the wearer’s respiratory droplets and help protect their co-workers and members of the general public.” With employees wearing masks, photo ID badges not only add that extra level of visual security, but can also be integrated with other solutions like access control, authentication, time tracking or to automate tracking and monitoring protocols for social distancing and contact tracing using real-time location services.

    • K12 BadgeK-12 Schools

      Most K-12 guidance in every state for returning to school in the fall — whether it be a traditional, distanced or hybrid model — require all students and staff to wear face masks. The CDC recommends face coverings “when students, teachers, and staff are indoors and when social distancing of at least 6 feet is difficult to implement or maintain.” For security reasons, and for the simple requirement of identifying new students and classmates, photo identification badges worn on a lanyard will play an important role to the school year. Develop contact tracing by scanning ID badges for temperature readings and check in/out when entering a bus or school premises.

    • Colleges and Universities
      Many colleges and universities are implementing a distanced or hybrid model for returning to school in the fall. The CDC suggests colleges and universities “recommend and reinforce use of masks among students, faculty, and staff. Face coverings should be worn [if] feasible and are most essential in times when physical distancing is difficult.” Students and faculty typically already require an identification card, so implementing a visual element could be as simple as redesigning a card and supplying lanyards.

    IdentiSys is a full-service identification and security solutions provider, delivering affordable end-to-end solutions for ID badging, as well as integrated access control, tracking, and real-time location services. Contact us to learn more about how we can help your organization mitigate the developing situation with COVID-19.

  • Safe and Secure Practices of Returning to Campus

     Campus Solutions for COVID-19

    As the curve of COVID-19 infections begin to level off, more of the population recovers from infections, and as government shelter-in-place and similar orders begin to expire, colleges and universities are confronted with the complexities of returning students, faculty and staff to campus in a manner that is safe and ensures continuity to the academic program. Colleges and universities must implement a plan that is tailored to their academic mission and responsive to the developing situation with COVID-19. Here are some recommendations that will help ensure the safety of people on campus by limiting the spread of COVID-19.

    Digital Identification - Offer digital identification cards with the use of mobile devices. Student ID cards can be loaded on to student smart phones with the same barcode and contactless capabilities of plastic cards, or simply for the use as visual identification only. Offer secure on-line photo submission that can be digitally approved to be used for digital or plastic ID cards. For student and faculty plastic ID badges, consider offering anti-microbial lanyards and badge holders.

    Event and Visitor Tracking - Track students, parents and guests on campus at events and other large group gatherings. Track and document for contact tracing, should anyone on campus test positive for COVID-19 during the school year.

    Thermal Temperature Detection - Screen and detect elevated body temperatures related to illness such as COVID-19. Solutions are available for access control and for monitoring low and high volume traffic though doors, gates and main pathways.

    Sneeze Shields and Face Shields - Proper barriers for campus personnel in high-volume areas of campus will limit the spread of COVID-19. Places to consider include student administrative counters, point-of-sale areas, libraries, book stores and more.

     

    Learn more about our solutions and products for essential businesses.

  • Contact Tracing with Real-Time Locating Systems

    Contact tracing is a disease control method used by health professionals and health department personnel and is critical for tracking and preventing the spread of COVID-19.

    According to the CDC, new technology and agile data management systems for contact tracing are ​necessary for fast reporting and public action on communicable disease. When hospitals and clinics admit patients, medical personnel, visitors and other patients are potentially exposed to COVID-19. If a test on a patient returns positive, technology is the most effective way to determine where that patient has been and when, in order to identify and communicate with those who have been exposed.

    IdentiSys offers an effective contact tracing solution to track patient, personnel and asset​s using real-time locating systems.

    The HID Contact Tracing Surge Response Rapid Deployment Kit is a comprehensive system that tracks patient movement and encounters with other people, and allows health care personnel to analyze that data quickly and react appropriately. It uses a combination of hardware and secure cloud software via Bluetooth, wi-fi and cellular networks to generate data on patient and staff location and movement.

    The kit includes BEEKS badge beacons and asset beacons, BluFi wifi gateways that communicate with the beacons, and cloud-based software for patient, staff reporting and analytics.

    Contact us to learn more about contact tracing with real-time locating systems.

  • Used Ribbon Data Risks: How to Properly Dispose of ID Card Printer Ribbon

    What do you do with your ID card printer ribbons after use? Chances are you're just tossing them in the trash.

    Not a great idea, because whether you have a direct-to-card or reverse-transfer printer, used ribbons contain imprints of every piece of data that was printed on ID cards.

     Ribbon Imprint from Card

    When printing on cards, data is transferred from the print head to the ribbon, before ultimately printing to the card. However, the used ribbon contains a mirror image of every card that ran through the printer.

    If you don't properly dispose of the used ribbon, full names, account numbers, barcodes, and other sensitive information can easily be stolen. For example, employee ID badges, membership cards, and payment cards (gift cards, debit cards, etc.) are especially vulnerable because of the type of data made available on the cards.

    SMART-BIT and RippaFortunately, there are two solid options for properly disposing used ribbon from your ID card printer:

    • The SMART-BIT printer ribbon shredder from IDP takes your used printer ribbons and slices them up into a thin, confetti-like pieces, making them completely useless to scammers and counterfeiters.
    • If you have an existing industrial office shredder, the Rippa from IdentiSys is an attachment accessory that sits on top of the shredder to simultaneously shred up to four ribbons at a time by threading between two rolls of standard, commercially available paper.

    Secure Printing Option 

    Remove the need to properly dispose ribbon altogether by ​printing on the Fargo DTC1500 by HID Global. The DTC1500 has a unique resin scramble data protection feature that essentially hides data by making used panels unreadable.


    Protecting data by properly destroying used card printer ribbons is often overlooked and can potentially be harmful to a business. Fortunately, there are disposal methods for used ribbons that can drastically lower the chance of such a data breach.

    IdentiSys is North America's largest full-service identification and security solutions provider. For more information about card printer security and about these ribbon disposal options, contact us to connect with a security and identification expert.

  • Create On-Demand Plastic Card Food Labels for Hospitality, Grocery and Restaurant Industries

    If you are in the hospitality, grocery or restaurant industry, you are tasked to comply with regulations and standards for food labeling. Food labeling must include nutritional information, ingredients and potential allergens to enable consumers to make ​better informed decisions about their food choices.

    IdentiSys is an authorized sales and service provider of the Edikio desktop printer system, an all-in-one solution that lets you design and print attractive food contact-safe labels quickly and easily, all from the comfort of your establishment. Food labels are created with plastic cards that are more hygienic and very easy to clean compared to commonly used chalkboard cards or laminated paper.

    This solution is appealing for buffets, but these multi-purpose cards are used for various applications where display signs for food ​are required.

    There are a few Edikio package options, but all of them include:

    • Printer
    • Label design and print software
    • Ribbon
    • PVC Cards

    Food Safe Display Price Tags 

    The software included with the system is intuitive and contains a wide variety of different templates and images to use to personalize your labels. Excel databases can be used to make bulk updates and for batch printing.

    Edikio Screenshot

    Contact us to learn more about the Edikio all-in-one solution for your plastic card labeling needs.

  • Alternatives to Automark Embosser and Indenting Machines

    Embossed Metal Plates and Tags

    Automark Marking Systems is an industrial manufacturer of metal tag embossing and indenting machines. Automark went out of business in December 2014, leaving customers scrambling to find a supplier for compatible tags/plates and spare parts.

    IdentiSys can source many of the metal plates and strip tags used with existing Automark machines that still work. Unfortunately, if you have an Automark system that doesn't, repairs are extremely difficult because replacement parts are now essentially nonexistent.

    Automatic Metal Plate Embossing MachineTo prevent delays in production, it is recommended to replace your Automark metal tag embosser or indent machine with a model that can be serviced and repaired. IdentiSys is North America's largest sales and service provider for identification and tracking solutions, including metal plate embossing and indenting systems.

    Many types of machines are available to be configured to work with various tags and plates of different metal types, shapes and sizes to accommodate various identification and tracking applications. IdentiSys is an authorized supplier and service provider for metal marking machines from Matica and CIM.

    Contact IdentiSys today for more information and a quote.

  • Why It's Important to Clean your ID Card Printer

     cleaning rollers on zebra id card printer

    Do you ever get white specks or discoloration on your printed cards? Your printer probably just needs a good cleaning.

    As with most ​equipment, care and maintenance of your ID card printer goes a long way. Printers aren’t airtight, and dust and debris will eventually find their way into even the best printers. Regular cleaning will prolong the life of your machine and give you better looking prints. You’ll also avoid potential warranty issues with certain manufacturers. Regular cleaning also prevents larger bits of dirt from contacting the print head, which could cause damage. Be aware: The print head is usually the most expensive part of a machine to replace! Always check your manual for directions to properly clean your printer.

    Most card printers ​use adhesive cleaning rollers, which need to be replaced on occasion. Some rollers are meant to be reused and contain a static charge that collects dust and requires occasional rinsing under water. Cleaning cards are used for cleaning important parts, such as print heads, transport rollers, and the magnetic encoder station. Some print heads can be cleaned using a special cleaning pen.

    Most manufacturers recommend cleaning card printers after 500-1000 card prints, or every time after changing a ribbon. Again, check your manual for the recommended cleaning schedule for your printer.

    Cleaning your printer isn’t overly complicated, but not doing so can lead to unnecessary repairs and issues. In addition to regular cleaning, preventative maintenance will maintain the system's peak performance. With an IdentiSys Service Maintenance Agreement, periodic system maintenance is scheduled to keep your machine working optimally. Worn or defective parts are replaced and your system is cleaned—all at no extra charge. Contact us for more info on pricing and availability.

  • Secure Card Features: Don't let your ID card program be a victim of fake IDs

    Fake IDs

    Do a quick search on "fake ID" or "fake badge" with your preferred search engine and you will see endless stories of crimes committed using fake ID cards or badges. Shockingly, many of the stories involve a perpetrator using just a common desktop inkjet printer and a basic laminator from their local office supply store.

    From a fan creating a fake press pass to attend Game 7 of the NBA Finals to civilians flashing fake law enforcement ID badges to get free food around town, just about every type of business or organization has been a victim of fake IDs.

    Fake IDs are commonly associated with state ID and driver's licenses, but all types of falsified IDs have financial and security implications. For example, duplicated membership cards are created to avoid paying membership dues and ID badges are forged to gain access to secured buildings and areas.

    There are a variety of fake ID crimes, with consequences from these crimes ranging from ​slaps on the wrists to bans from establishments and criminal charges. Regardless of the severity of the crimes, it all can be avoided with a secure ID card program.

    To combat against these fake ID crimes, ID card printer manufacturers have developed a variety of secure card printing features to make counterfeiting ID cards and badges extremely difficult to do.

    Top Security Features:

    • Tactile Impression - Some printers are equipped with an impressor feature that utilizes a mechanical die within the laminator that physically impresses a generic or custom design directly onto the card substrate and overlay or patch laminate in the same pass.
    • Custom Lamination - Custom text and image on lamination makes counterfeiting and tampering very difficult.
    • UV Print - UV fluorescent ribbons contain special panels that allow you to print fluorescing images on cards. These fluorescent panel ribbons produce grayscale images and text that only appear with a UV black light​.
    • 3D Effects - Add a metallic silver layer to the card to create 3D visual effects, without having to change ribbons. The printer creates a base layer of metallic text or images, adds a dye receptive layer, a standard layer, and finally a protective overlay.
    • Color Shifting - Color-shifting ribbon allows you to print cards with pearlescent text and images that shift from pink to green as you rotate the card.
    • Foil Stamps - A metallic or holographic foil that is transferred using a heated die to stamp an opaque or translucent image onto a surface.
    • Microtext - 600 DPI printers are able to print in small text that can only be read with a magnified glass. Microtext is difficult to counterfeit because most available desktop printers cannot print that high of a resolution.
    • Watermark - Use a double overlay ribbon to print images on either the first or second overlay panel to create a subtle “watermark” feature that is faint yet still visible to the human eye.

    IdentiSys is North America's largest full-service identification and security solutions provider. IdentiSys carries a variety of ID card printers that can produce cards with extra security features. Whether you are looking to start a new ID program ​or improve an existing, contact us to connect with your local sales representative to discuss your project.

  • PVC vs. Composite Cards

    ISO Composite Proximity Cards

    When choosing card stock for your ID card printer, you'll come across two types of plastic ID cards — PVC and composite.

    Cards made of PVC — which stands for poly-vinyl chloride — is the standard card stock material and works well for most ID card printing jobs. In most cases, if you are using just a dye sublimation (direct-to-card) ID card printer with no laminating, you can use a standard PVC card.

    However PVC does not stand up well to heat of 280ºF or above — temperatures of which can be reached with the extra heat from laminating or retransfer card printing. Warping, the slight bending or cracking of the card, may occur with standard PVC cards in these cases. Composite PVC-PET cards contain polyester material (usually up to 60%) and can withstand higher temperatures, preventing the risk of warping. Because of this, composite cards are highly recommended for laminating cards and for retransfer printing.

  • Switch to photo ID badges from proximity keyfobs and clamshell cards

    Keyfobs and Clamshell CardsKeyfob and clamshell proximity cards work great for organizations that want to secure door and gate access. ​However, having photo ID badges embedded with proximity card technology will add an additional layer of security because it adds the visual identification element.

    Having employees and personnel wear photo ID badges that include a name, title, photo and company logo visually confirms they are authorized to be in the building, but will also create a professional look for the organization.

     Employee ID Badges

    Going from keyfobs and clamshell cards to photo ID badges will require a photo ID system and blank PVC printable prox cards. Elements of a typical photo ID system includes the following:

    • ID card printer
    • Camera
    • Photo ID backdrop
    • ID badge creation software
    • ID accessories (lanyards, badge holders and badge reels)

    Switching proximity credentials is straightforward, as the proximity technology — regardless of the card format — is typically available in any credential type, whether it be a keyfob, clamshell or printable PVC card.

    IdentiSys is North America's largest full-service identification and security solutions provider. Whether you are looking to switch to photo ID badges with an existing system or implement a whole new access control system that incorporates ID badges, contact us to connect with your local sales representative to discuss your project.