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Identification Vs. Security

Wristbands are used for many reasons & it is important that the right choice is made, so that the wristband is fit for purpose. Rule #1 is that ALL wristbands - whether they are Tyvek, Plastic, synthetic, Silicone or Woven - can be used for Identification, which is one of the reasons they are often referred to as ID bands.

Once you have decided you require a wristband solution, you should then evaluate how secure it should be. Identification of children at say a Birthday party held at McDonalds, would simply require a basic wristband to allow staff to identify who was entitled to which meals. A coloured tyvek wristband would be ideal to identify different groups & the likelyhood of children transferring a wristband would be minimal, so a security aspect to the wristband is not necessary.

Now let's make that party a Music Festival where a value is attached to the entry, let's say $100. Often they run all day & it's not inconceiveable for patrons to spend 6 hours there & then when leaving the venue try & transfer the wristband to someone else for $ 50 so they can then access the event. If successful, the Promoter loses $ 100 & it doesn't take many of those to add up into a significant amount of lost revenue. However, you would be surprised at the number of events where organisers think they are saving money by purchasing the cheapest ID solution. It tends to be a false economy & they have no way of quantifying just how much revenue is being lost.

Security solutions begin with the wristband being non stretch & non transferrable with the wristband being imprinted with an identifying text & or logo. Tyvek & plastic wristbands are regularly used as secure wristbands, with plastic wristbands considered more secure than tyvek bands.

Recently, Digital & Image wristbands have come to the fore offering photo quality graphics & variable data, where each adjoining wristband can be individualised with photos & names of the attendee. These digital wristbands often have a barcode imprint as well, which can be scanned to ensure only the one entry is allowed.

Digital wristbands are seen as part of a solution sell, where the wristband is not a stand alone item but used in conjunction with access & entry systems designed for data capture, such as the Wizid Guidepost system. Barcode solutions on tyvek wristbands are somewhat unreliable due to the nature of the material producing a clean barcode which is 100% readable.

Barcode scanning solutions have also been attempted with thermal wristbands, but these wristbands are considered to have poor security as the adhesives used have been defeated easily & the wristband transferred without detection.