Security printing

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Security printing plants are special printing plants that use raw materials and manufacturing processes from sources that are not generally accessible and whose products are adequately protected against counterfeiting .

Products and printing technology

Typical products of a security print shop are ID cards , banknotes , shares , but also entrance tickets , vouchers or maps . Different technologies are used, depending on the need for protection of the printed matter :

In addition to these printing techniques, security features are incorporated into the paper, for example watermarks , UV embossing, thermoreactive paper, planchettes incorporated in the paper or (UV-fluorescent) security threads . In addition, special colors are used whose properties are difficult or impossible to copy. Thermoreactive inks and inks with physical properties are used, which can be tested by technical test devices and thus enable machine testing of authenticity.

The summarized security features that are introduced to protect the printed matter are called security design. The security design creates the protection of the printed matter in a combination of security paper , special printing inks and printing or production techniques . Modern banknotes in particular combine various security features in order to improve protection against counterfeiting.


Security printing companies organized themselves into various organizations to represent common interests. One of the most important organizations is INTERGRAF European Federation for Print and Digital Communication in Brussels , which, according to its own statements, represents 21 national organizations in Europe.

Certification of security printing companies

Certified security printing companies meet standardized requirements for the security of products, processes, systems and other areas.

European Committee for Standardization

At the instigation of INTERGRAF and in cooperation with the International Hologram Manufacturers Association (IHMA), the Universal Postal Union (UPU) and VPGI, the definition of standardized requirements for security printers began in 2001 with the support of the European Committee for Standardization (CEN). In November 2002, a final document was presented with a first standardized set of requirements according to which security printers can be certified, the CEN Workshop Agreement (CWA) CWA 14641: 2009 Requirements for printing companies for the creation of papers with security elements.

CWA 14641 sets the following basic principles for security printing:

  • Security printers must ensure the security of their products, processes, machines and systems, information, etc. in order to meet the requirements of their customers in a verifiable and demonstrable manner.
  • The security printing company must give its own management the confidence that the desired security goals will be achieved and kept up to date.
  • The security printer must give the customer the assurance that the agreed security level has been or will be achieved. If this is contractually required, then this may also include how this confidence must be shown.

International Standards Organization

In a joint working group (JWG), ISO TC 130, Graphic Technologies, Working Group 5 , and ISO TC 247 Fraud countermeasures and controls of the International Organization for Standardization developed the ISO 14298 standard - Management of security printing processes), in which the minimum requirements for security printing companies are defined. An ISO 14298 certificate attests to its worldwide recognition as a security printing company. The requirements were drawn up in cooperation with INTERGRAF, the International Confederation for the Printing and Allied Industries asbl in Brussels. A certification must be renewed every three years.

NASPO International

NASPO International (originally: North American Security Products Organization) is a non-profit US organization for the development and certification of standards for security products. The NASPO specifications for security printing plants based on ISO 14298 were recognized by the American National Standards Institute in 2013 and published as ANSI / NASPO SA 2013. The content of the requirement is largely identical to ISO 14298. Unlike there, the requirements are not limited to security printers, card printers and manufacturers of security films, but also extend the requirements to suppliers of technologies, i.e. printing machine manufacturers, paper or ink producers, etc. to organizations that want to introduce appropriate security practices.

List of security printing companies

This list is not intended to be exhaustive. Rather, important security printing companies are to be listed here that print or have printed at least banknotes or official identification documents.

designation founding year country ID cards Postage stamps Banknotes Remarks
Federal Printing Office 1879 Germany Yes Yes Yes In 2000, the federal government sold its 100% stake in Apax Partners & Co . In 2009 the buyback of Bundesdruckerei was announced.
Giesecke + Devrient (G + D) 1852 Germany Yes Yes Yes operates worldwide
Orell Füssli security printing 1909 Switzerland Yes Yes Orell Füssli is a private company and has been printing Swiss francs on behalf of the Swiss National Bank since 1976 . A sub-company produces the travel documents.
Austrian Banknote and Security Printing (OeBS) Austria Yes Subsidiary of the Oesterreichische Nationalbank (OeNB)
Austrian State Printing Office 1918 Austria Yes Yes Privatized in 1999
Banque de France (BdF) 1800 France Yes
Imprimerie nationale 1640 France
Oberthur Technologies 1852 France Yes Yes operates worldwide
Australian Government Publishing Service Australia 1997 privatized
Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP) 1862 United States Yes Yes Ministry of Finance Authority
Casa de la Moneda Bolivia
De la Rue 1813 United Kingdom Yes Yes operates worldwide
Her Majesty's Stationery Office United Kingdom Partially privatized in 1995
Imprimerie Generale Belgium
Magyar Nemzeti Bank (MNB) 1924 Hungary Yes
Istituto Poligrafico e Zecca Dello Stato (IPZS) Istituto Poligrafico e Zecca dello Stato 1928 Italy
Polska Wytwórnia Papierów Wartościowych (PWPW) 1919 Poland Yes Yes
Queen's Printer Canada Canada grants the printing privilege to private printers, which then use the attribute “Queen's Printer” (“King's Printer”).
Staatsdrukkerij en Uitgeverij Netherlands Privatized in 2007
Állami Nyomda Plc. 1851 Hungary
United States Government Printing Office 1861 United States Yes
Waterlow & Sons Portugal Yes see also: Alves dos Reis
Banknote and Coin Production Organization of Iran (SPMO) 1877 Iran Yes Yes Subsidiary of the Central Bank of Iran (CBI), since 1983 as a printing company

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. a b c d Industry description on Who delivers what? ( ); Retrieved June 29, 2016.
  2. a b c d e f g Security design on; Retrieved July 6, 2016.
  3. a b Comité Européen de Normalization Workshop Agreement; CWA 14641: 2009 (E) Security Management System for Security Printing ; European Committee for Standardization of June 2009; ICS 37.100.10; 35.1.
  4. ISO 14298 on the International Standards Organization website.
  5. a b c Description of the range of services offered by the certification body Société Générale de Surveillance (SGS) with regard to ISO 14298; Certification according to ISO 14298 ; Retrieved June 29, 2016.
  6. FAQ | NASPO The Standard for Security . In: NASPO The Standard for Security . ( [accessed February 14, 2017]).
  7. a b c Executive Director's Report ( Memento of the original dated August 9, 2014 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (PDF) of the North American Security Products Organization as of April 2014.  @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  8. ^ Minister, Murks, Moneten . Focus Online, July 7, 2008
  9. ^ Federal government is buying back Bundesdruckerei ( memento from November 1, 2010 in the Internet Archive ), Bundesdruckerei press release, March 6, 2009