Certilogo participates in e-P Summit 2023
The crucial role of digital product authentication for fashion
Certilogo participated in the 2023 edition of eP Summit, the Pitti Immagine event dedicated to the relationship between fashion and the digital world. Michele Casucci, CEO and founder of Certilogo, dedicated his opening day speech to the critical role digital product authentication has to play for fashion and luxury brands, as they adopt digital IDs to support their traceability, engagement, and digital product passport strategies.
Casucci revealed the hidden hazards brands expose themselves to, as a result of underestimating the importance of protecting their products with secure authentication, or conversely as a consequence of myths and misunderstandings around new technologies such as blockchain, leading to brands having a false sense of security about their current implementation. The ramifications of this can result in projects having the opposite outcome than intended, which leaves brands more at risk from counterfeit products, reduced sustainability and eroded consumer and market trust.
“Brands are facing a complex challenge to implement the traceability required for digital product passports - said Casucci - It is important that they don’t undermine their investment in these projects by underestimating the importance of securing their products or misjudging the security they believe themselves to have. I sincerely recommend that they bring in a security specialist around the table to help solve the challenges of traceability and secure their investments in the long term.”
New technologies - old tricks
By highlighting cases of infamous fraudsters such as Bernie Madoff, Casucci drew attention to the innate behaviours that make us susceptible to fraud, and how lessons learned from them can help brands to better protect themselves, their consumers and the planet from the pitfalls of insecure authentication. New technologies are prime targets for criminals, and digital IDs and product passports are no exception.
Connected products are redefining the concept of what makes a product genuine. Aside from their much-appreciated ability to be instantly authenticated, the product's digital tag itself, and the content, services, and storytelling of the consumer journey that is accessed, all become new elements that convey the authenticity of the product and build all-important trust in the brand. These same elements are targets for a new digital generation of counterfeiters that ‘hack’ digital IDs and product passports to steal a brand’s product identities. When applied to counterfeit products, stolen and false IDs are giving rise to a new era of the ‘super fake’ that is more advanced and convincing than ever before.
Regulatory pressure is also pushing a growing number of fashion brands to proactively adopt connected products, anticipating the legislation that will make them mandatory. The EU's strategy for circular textiles places the Digital Product Passport (DPP) at the center of its initiatives. Other regulations, such as the INFORM Consumers Act and the SHOP Safe Act in the United States, will hold companies responsible for protecting consumers and the environment in case of fraudulent sales on e-commerce platforms. Therefore, authentication will soon become a standard and essential feature to comply with these provisions.
Secure by Design™
Casucci underlined how Certilogo’s unique Secure by Design™ approach ensures only authentic products can gain access to a brand's own digital services, while ensuring fake products with cloned or false IDs are intercepted, recognised and managed by the brand. By taking responsibility for ensuring fake products can’t circulate freely in the circular ecosystem, brands can demonstrate to consumers and 3rd parties that they are serious about sustainability, and protecting the consumer. Certilogo’s holistic Secure by Design™ methodology transforms authentication from a defensive tool into a proactive business-boosting solution; creating exciting new opportunities for brands to monetise the product throughout the entire circular lifecycle of the product, and enhance the business and sustainability strategies of fashion and luxury brands.
Democratising connected products
In concluding his presentation, Michele Casucci declared:
“With digital product passports going from being nice-to-have to must-have, we have set out to democratise connected products and have established a secure solution that is accessible to all brands, independent of their size, volumes, product categories and level of experience. We believe in the important role that connected products will play in creating a more sustainable relationship with fashion, and in that respect we are working to make the benefits of this technology accessible and easy to implement by as many brands as possible.”
For those unable to attend, the learnings Casucci shared and further insights have been made available in Certilogo’s latest White Paper "Connected Products: why authentication is a hygiene factor" which Casucci launched during the event, which is downloadable here .