Secure Documents

Taking Stock of Tickets

Taking a closer look at your tickets could tell you if they're fake.

Paper makers like Fortress Paper are most known in the security sector for their production of banknote paper, and rightfully so. At their mill in Landqart, Switzerland, Fortress Paper manufactures some of the world’s most high-tech and highly securitized banknotes for many countries including Switzerland.

Specializing in security features for banknotes, Fortress has become a leading international supplier of security and specialty papers. Banknotes, however, aren’t the only documents that require security devices.

The ticketing and live event industries are suffering similar setbacks as the banknote world. With colour copying technology being easier to access and easier to afford these days, ticket counterfeiting is on the rise. As a result, many event coordinators have turned to security paper makers like Fortress Paper for securitized tickets.

Called the “crime of the ‘90s” by the FBI, document fraud is one of the fastest growing crimes in the US and has taken a major toll on event tickets. Many anti-counterfeiting devices have been added to tickets in order to combat this crime spree.

From holograms to no-copy inks to thermo chromic inks, tickets are being produced with high-tech device that prevent colour copying.

One of the most popular security devices is a visible shiny varnish on the ticket that reflects light if it is copied, producing an inferior product. Another measure being used in the industry is holographic glitter embedded in a coating covering the ticket.

UV printing is also a common device employed to thwart counterfeiters, as well as foil stamping, unique barcodes and embossed logos.

Still, not everyone is jumping on the secure ticket bandwagon. This news piece from Cincinatti’s WLWT News 5 shows how easy it could be to counterfeit NFL tickets:

There are some easy ways to detect tickets you suspect may be fake. Many tickets have textured areas that feel different than other parts of the ticket and printers cannot reproduce this difference in texture. If the ticket feels like standard copy paper without any raised ink or textured differences, it may be a fake. Poorly printed tickets that smudge when you rub them is also a sure-fire indicator that your tickets aren’t the real deal.

SOURCES: “Ticket Buying Advice: “Are Your Tickets Authentic?” “Counterfeit Tickets Growing Problem”
YouTube: “Don’t Get Caught With Counterfeit Tickets”


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