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Enhanced security - greater convenience

Bayer MaterialScience AG : 21 February, 2005  (Company News)
Bayer Industry Services GmbH & Co. oHG
'Forgery-proof, copy-proof, convenient and long-lasting – those are the key advantages of the ID cards,' says Cengiz Yesildag, a member of the Film Group at Bayer MaterialScience. 'By the end of 2005, more than 70,000 new IDs will have been issued to Bayer staff, our Chemical Park partners and the roughly 100 outside contractors working on-site at any given time,' observes Eugen Danisch, from the Bayer Industry Services Site Security department.

The new ID card, with integrated microantenna and chip, meets the recommendations of the German “Störfallkommission” (Disruption of Plant Operations Commission). After the terror attacks of September 11, 2001, the Commission published guidelines calling for improved security measures to protect employees and plant facilities. 'With the help of the new IDs, we can further improve access authorization,' says Danisch.

At the gate, the ID card also means greater convenience, because unlike the previous barcode IDs, it permits contactless reading. The reader detects the cards from a distance of about ten centimeters and verifies access authorization.

Danisch: 'The card not only accelerates access to the various sites, but can also be used in the future at other locations as a quick means of identification.' In addition to a photo and a name, the IDs are still printed with a barcode for scanner reading, so that employees can use them to make cashless purchases at the company restaurant or the Bayer store and log flextime hours. Later, all of these functions can be integrated in the chip.

Makrofol® ID is ideal for both chip integration and personalization via laser printing. The latter feature must offer the highest possible contrast, so that the photo and name of the cardholder are clearly recognizable. Up to 15 security features can be integrated in the cards to protect them against unauthorized use, copying and forgery.

The chip and the film layers are bonded together permanently in a multi-layer design. The long-term flexural strength of the material, combined with its high stiffness, prevent the millimeter-size RFID chip from rupturing or coming loose.

'Makrofol® ID is always the material of choice for ID cards requiring a long service life – unlike credit cards made of PVC,' Yesildag notes. The ID cards made of PC film have already proven their durability many times over in practice: eight years ago, the Swiss ID card and the German driver's license were introduced in the new format specified by the European Union, and both are made of Makrofol® ID. Another current application of the material at Bayer is season tickets for the Bayer 04 Leverkusen soccer club’s home matches.

Incidentally, the end of the ID cards' service life marks a new beginning, because they can easily be recycled: the chip is punched out and the separated polycarbonate used in quality-controlled, recycled PC grades for injection molding.
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