Document Security Paper

Hidden Message Technology Limitations - Update



The reason for using document security paper is to make it impossible to accurately duplicate an original document, thus eliminating the chance of mistaking a copy for an original document.

It is suggested by document security specialists that a secure document should contain layers of security.


As technology continues to improve, it is important to note that Hidden Message Technology, the technology used to cause a VOID to appear when a document is photocopied or scanned, does not work 100% of the time on 100 percent of the copiers and scanners. There are a dozen different patents as well as a public domain version used to print this technology. Unfortunately NONE of these methods work 100 percent of the time.


When Hidden Message Technology is use on Medical Prescription Paper, you may find that a "valid script" --- no matter who manufatured the paper or which patent was used to create the hidden message --- may be photocopied on some copiers without the hidden message appearing. When viewed under a magnifying glass, you will see how the background changes where the words are imbedded into the pantograph background. Yet on some copiers, depending upon the way the light hits the page, the message still does not appear. It is just the nature of the technology. It is beholden unto the pharmacist to use due diligence and not to reject an valid script should the words "void "fail to appear when the pharmacist attempts to make a photo copy. As an added measure of security, Micro Format adds an Artificial Watermark security feature to the back of the scripts. This watermark can be viewed when the script is held on a 45 degree angle toward the light. It is impossible to copy or scan this feature.

Facts and Limitations relative to
Document Security Paper Features

  • "Hidden Message VOID technology" does not work 100% of the time on 100% of copiers (standard and color copiers) and scanners.

  • To make the void appear, often the pantograph is printed where by the "VOID" may be seen lightly in the background on the original.

  • When a prescription pad is cut using a guillotine cutter from the four-up sheet on which it was printed, the distance from the edge of the sheet to the White Reverse Rx may vary slightly.

  • When printing with an offset press, depending upon ink flow, the intensity of the blue color may vary between production runs as well as within the same production run.

  • A slight variation in the intensity of the colored background will impact of how the hidden message will appear when copied.

  • The manufacturers of high quality copiers such as Xerox and Canon are in the business of making "accurate copies," exact reproductions of an original. Should the "VOID" appear, the copy is no longer an exact reproduction. Rather it is a bad copy.

There is much more to DOCUMENT SECURITY PAPER than just Hidden Message Technology.


A comprehensive listing of document security features, both covert and overt, can be found on our web site at


Stephen A. Singer

Document Security Paper Specialist

Micro Format, Inc. ~ Wheeling IL 60090



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Micro Format, Inc. ~ 830-3 Seton Court Wheeling, IL 60090
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