AMD promotes new label to identify authentic chips

AMD promotes new label to identify authentic chips

Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) has started putting 3D holographic labels on the packaging of boxed processors so customers, resellers and distributors can verify the authenticity of the chips.

The move comes after AMD said police had seized a number of its chips from an illegal re-marking operation in Taiwan earlier this month.

The holographic label appears on the bottom left corner of the packaging for boxed Athlon 64 FX, Athlon 64, Sempron and Opteron chips, the company said.

AMD's boxed processors are often purchased by system builders and PC buyers choosing their own components. They come with a heat sink, a fan and carry a 3-year limited warranty.

The introduction of the new security feature follows a report from Taiwanese online news agency, DigiTimes, that Taiwanese police seized 60,000 defective AMD chips from a group planning to re-mark the chips and sell them in Germany and China.

By re-marking chips criminals can resell them as more valuable models, with a higher clock speed or on-chip cache, for instance.

An AMD spokesperson in Germany said the company was not aware of any false AMD products having entered the distribution channel from Taiwan.

He rejected a suggestion that the new packaging program was introduced as a result of the reported defective chips. The 3-D hologram is so far being used only on AMD's boxed processors.

The company said the hologram of the AMD arrow logo was difficult to duplicate and was designed to make tampering evident.

It would try to educate customers about the new packaging using email, marketing materials at points of sale and other methods, it said.

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