In the last ten years Internet and public key cryptography developed new ways to offer goods in what is known now as "electronic commerce". One of the problems still to be solved efficiently is how to link the information with the objects. The proposed solution can be useful for enhanced security, increasing the probability to recover lost or stolen things, as well as improving the commercial image and control of trademarks.
Artificial vision and technical photography can be used for computer implementation of standard formats for any object accurate description. Once a method, a format and a tool are selected, the digital image of the object must be always the same. When necessary, analysis of physical behaviour of the materials can be used in order to find a single set of data related with the object. The data must be detailed enough to single it out.
Any digital representation of an object is always just a computer file. This file can be operated by one-way hash functions producing small messages. There are several tools for branding any object in order to print the hash value in the surface, or even inside.
Moreover, the trademark seller, the owner, or a trusted third party can add any other information related with the object to the message, and they can use public key cryptography for signing with a digital certificate. With or without it, a short message, for instance, 128 bits, can be enough digital information for any branding aim.
As a practical example, we are working with expensive gemstones. Digital pictures of precious stones can be performed in with very accurate optical tools, but crystal analysis, weight, faceted geometry, colour, clarity and electro-magnetic or thermal properties can also be used as an input of a computer program based in an algorithm. The output must be always the same for any single gemstone. Different gemstones must have different outputs in codification dependence based on the principles of confusion and diffusion that were suggested by Shannon. A gemstone can be considered the key, or the plain text, in a standard cryptosystem for object identification and authentication. The output can be printed in the gemstone using laser or nanotechnology tools.
TARIC Section XIV - Natural or cultured pearls, precious or semi-precious
stones, precious metals, metals clad with precious metal and articles thereof;
imitation jewellery; coin
Chapter 71 - NATURAL OR CULTURED PEARLS, PRECIOUS OR SEMI-PRECIOUS STONES, PRECIOUS METALS, METALS CLAD WITH PRECIOUS METAL, AND ARTICLES THEREOF; IMITATION JEWELLERY; COIN
7101 I. NATURAL OR CULTURED PEARLS AND PRECIOUS OR SEMI-PRECIOUS STONES -
7101 Pearls, natural or cultured, whether or not worked or graded but not strung, mounted or set; pearls, natural or cultured, temporarily strung for convenience of transport -
7102 Diamonds, whether or not worked, but not mounted or set -
7103 Precious stones (other than diamonds) and semi-precious stones, whether or not worked or graded but not strung, mounted or set; ungraded precious stones (other than diamonds) and semi-precious stones, temporarily strung for convenience of transport -
7104 Synthetic or reconstructed precious or semi-precious stones, whether or not worked or graded but not strung, mounted or set; ungraded synthetic or reconstructed precious or semi-precious stones, temporarily strung for convenience of transport -
7105 Dust and powder of natural or synthetic precious or semi-precious stones -
7106 II. PRECIOUS METALS AND METALS CLAD WITH PRECIOUS METAL -
7106 Silver (including silver plated with gold or platinum), unwrought or in semi-manufactured forms, or in powder form -
7107 Base metals clad with silver, not further worked than semi-manufactured -
7108 Gold (including gold plated with platinum) unwrought or in semi-manufactured forms, or in powder form -
7109 Base metals or silver, clad with gold, not further worked than semi-manufactured -
7110 Platinum, unwrought or in semi-manufactured forms, or in powder form -
7111 Base metals, silver or gold, clad with platinum, not further worked than semi-manufactured -
7112 Waste and scrap of precious metal or of metal clad with precious metal; other waste and scrap containing precious metal or precious metal compounds, of a kind used principally for the recovery of precious metal -
7113 III. JEWELLERY, GOLDSMITHS' AND SILVERSMITHS' WARES AND OTHER ARTICLES -
7113 Articles of jewellery and parts thereof, of precious metal or of metal clad with precious metal -
7114 Articles of goldsmiths' or silversmiths' wares and parts thereof, of precious metal or of metal clad with precious metal -
7115 Other articles of precious metal or of metal clad with precious metal -
7116 Articles of natural or cultured pearls, precious or semi-precious stones (natural, synthetic or reconstructed) -
7117 Imitation jewellery -
7118 Coin -
|Miguel Angel Gallardo Ortiz,
Mining Engineer (UPM), Criminologist (UCM) and Expert Witness
Cooperación Internacional en Tecnologías Avanzadas (C.I.T.A.) SL
at Internet http://www.cita.es
Apartado Postal (P.O. Box) 17083, 28080 Madrid, España (Spain)
Tel.: (+34) 91 474 38 09, Modem/Fax: 91 473 81 97,