Track and Trace Serialization – Pharma Supply Security


Sandeep Singh

According to recent estimates, the global sales of counterfeit pharmaceuticals account for US$163 billion to $217 billion per year, accounting for one of the largest percentages of the fake goods trade worldwide. But beyond causing significant financial losses to manufacturers, the trade of adulterated and fake prescription drugs also represents a major threat to public health and safety. With so much at stake, it has never been more important for manufacturers in the pharmaceutical industry to invest in a bulletproof track and trace solution to gain greater visibility across the whole supply chain and manage their products through each distribution channel.

End-to-end supply visibility solutions enhanced by emerging technologies like NFTs, IoT, and Blockchain are an efficient solution – but only if tailored to each specific manufacturer. Learn more below or visit to start working towards a safer pharma supply chain.

The Importance of a Track and Trace Serialization System in the Pharmaceutical Industry

Recent episodes, such as the circulation of fake Covid-19 vaccines, have drawn attention to the importance for manufacturers to introduce track and trace serialization systems that can keep up with the latest development in the pharmaceutical industry.

The 1982 Chicago Tylenol murders show that prescription drug tampering has always been a risk. However, today, the global supply chain is larger and more complex than ever, which can prevent manufacturers from maintaining control over the journey of each unit to the customer.

What’s more, the rise of online marketplaces for prescription drugs has made it all the more complicated for end-users and manufacturers to determine the authenticity and safety of each product. That is why it isn’t surprising that an estimated 50% of drugs sold over the internet are fake or sub-standard.

The Benefits of Track and Trace Serialization

Track and trace serialization systems that provide real-time tracking and visibility across the supply chain offer endless benefits, including:

  • Real-time detection of diversion attempts that would bring items to unexpected markets and distribution channels
  • Reduction of waste and environmental impact across the production chain
  • Real-time insights into inventory indicators, customer insights, and product opening statistics.
  • Increase product availability and tracking capabilities
  • Ensure that each product meets high-quality standards and obtains the relevant certifications
  • Prevention of fraudulent attempts and criminal activity

Track and trace serialization solutions also leverage a two-part technology (such as NFC labels) to deliver information about the product’s journey through the supply chain, thus allowing the end-user to verify prevalence, authenticity, and production standards.

The Features of a Track and Trace System That Works

Real-Time Tracking

Products move through the supply chain at an unprecedented speed, and the current systems in place to track and trace each unit might be outdated, inefficient, and relaying obsolete information.

That is why real-time serialization tracking solutions are more important than ever. These solutions allow each unit to become a stand-alone, independent tracker that delivers information about its location, status, and quality in real-time- to both manufacturers and end-users. In turn, this system leaves no gaps in a security system designed to protect prescription drugs from tampering attempts.

User-Friendly Interfaces

User-friendly interfaces and data that can be accessed through cloud systems allow a company’s employees to access well-plotted, and easy-to-understand data about each product. This makes it easier for supply chain managers and end-users to visualize patterns, gain advanced analytics, and immediately pinpoint diversion attempts.

International Reach

The supply chain is expanding at lightning speed to meet the demand of today’s global trade. When it comes down to distributing prescription drugs and pharmaceuticals, it has never been more important to reduce costs and provide international access to certified goods.

In turn, to avoid gaps in the security systems and leaving blind spots that bad actors might leverage, it is paramount for track and trace systems to work anywhere, across borders, and in any jurisdiction.

Tracking Tools and Systems

Advancements in serialization systems and emerging technologies are offering manufacturers the chance to meet the changing security needs of the pharmaceutical industry.

Some of the most used systems include two-part technologies that allow employees across the supply chain and end-users to scan an NFC or RFID label to obtain and deliver information about each unit.

However, new solutions such as the one presented by Authena L1ve add an extra layer of security, accuracy, and efficiency by transforming each product into an autonomous tracker and recording each transaction on the blockchain.

Partnering With a Product Authentication Expert

When it comes down to creating a track and trace serialization system that works for a certain manufacturer, it is important to understand the unique needs and goals of each company.

While there is a range of serialization solutions worth exploring, a product authentication expert can review your needs, budget, and unique features (i.e.: the nature of your supply chain) to recommend personalized track and trace solutions.