What are covert and overt security printing features?

On 02.10.14, In Resources, Security Printing, by Blake Houser

Covert security feature simplified

As you begin to research using security printing to secure your product or documents, you will hear a lot of terms being tossed around.

Two terms commonly used are Covert and Overt. Similar words with opposite meanings.

 twenty euro banknote under ultra-violet light

twenty euro banknote under ultra-violet light

Covert simply means a hidden image invisible to the naked eye.

An example of a covert image would be one printed with invisible UV inks that fluoresce under UV light. The example in this picture is a €20 banknote under ultraviolet light.

Overt Security feature simplified

hologram on passport

hologram on passport

On the other hand, overt means something that is visible to the naked eye.  For example, a hologram is an overt printing technique.This picture is of a passport hologram, which quickly allows an inspector to glance at the passport and verify the hologram.

This is one line of defense, among several on a passport.

Blake Houser

Client Relations Manager at The Wells & Drew Companies
About the author:
Blake Houser is Client Relations Manager at Wells & Drew. In addition, he is the third generation in this family-owned speciality printing business.

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