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Product Authentication Using Hash Chains and Printed QR Codes (Computer Project)

This thesis explores the usage of simple printed tags for authenticating products. Printed tags are a cheap alternative to RFID and other tag based systems and do not require specialized equipment. Due to the simplistic nature of such printed codes, many security issues like tag impersonation, server impersonation, reader impersonation, replay attacks and denial of service present in RFID based solutions need to be handled differently.

An algorithm that utilizes hash chains to secure such simple tags while still keeping cost low is discussed. The security characteristics of this scheme as well as other product authentication schemes that use RFID tags are compared. Arguments for static tags being at least as secure as RFID tags is discussed. Finally, a scheme for combining RFID authentication with static tags to achieve security throughout the supply chain is discussed.
Source: South Dakota
Authors: Harshith R. Keni

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