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Life Cycle Logistics

Counterfeit Parts Prevention Initiative

Counterfeit Parts Prevention Initiative

Bill Kobren

In recent years DAU has worked with a range of DoD organizations to promulgate training and information to develop learning assets designed to increase awareness of the scourge and accompanying risks of counterfeit parts entering the DoD supply chain. Just a few include:


·         CLL 032 - Preventing Counterfeit Parts From Entering the DoD Supply System Continuous Learning Module

·         CLL 062 - Counterfeit Prevention Awareness Continuous Learning Module

·         Counterfeit Parts ACQuipedia article

·         Counterfeit Parts Awareness blog post

·         Counterfeit Electronic Parts blog post


In the spirit of continuing to increase awareness of both the issue and to highlight proactive mitigation efforts, wanted to bring to your attention an initiative by the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA). Check out the article on their website entitled “Defense Logistics Agency Launches DNA Marking Capability” which discusses DLA efforts to “make it easier to detect and prevent counterfeit microcircuits from entering into its supply chain” by “…performing an in-house microcircuit anti-counterfeit initiative, dubbed DNA marking…to  validate the authenticity of purchased microcircuits while increasing their reliability throughout the supply chain."


According to this article, “by establishing an organic or in-house DNA marking capability, DLA will improve delivery time and reduce costs, strengthen supply chain controls, enhance quality assurance and establish the capability to expand DNA marking to other parts deemed a high risk of counterfeiting.”


Moreover, “DNA marking consists of applying a botanical DNA identifier to the surface of a microcircuit to authenticate originality… A unique code or finger print, which deters counterfeiters, is incorporated into the ink of the DNA mark. This code can’t be replicated, reengineered or digitally copied.  The DNA mark can be detected by a hand-held scanner for easy identification within the supply chain. The DNA mark can also be swabbed for forensic testing, which provides detailed information about the microcircuit, such as supplier, cage code, and part and lot number. Additional information like contract data, award date, number, national stock number, quantity and time the microcircuit entered into DLA’s supply chain can also be retrieved….The DNA mark carries this authentication information throughout the life of the microcircuit and has the capability to trace and audit the movement of the microcircuit from receipt into DLA’s supply chain to the end user.”