Chroma Corp. (McHenry, Ill.) has developed Microtaggant identification particles, a covert, traceable, anticounterfeit technology designed to help manufacturers maintain product and design integrity. Incorporated into thermoplastic compounds used to make the company’s products and/or packaging, the microscopic encoded particles act as virtual “fingerprints” to authenticate genuine products, thus addressing issues of counterfeiting and theft of intellectual property. The particles carry a unique numeric code sequence in a multiple colored layer format. A unique coded sequence is registered to each customer or application and, says the company, will never be used for any other customer or purpose. The code can be read with a variety of handheld readers and scanners. Further, a nondestructive test can be used to find out if the part contains the correct resin, compound or alloy — or if they have been compromised.