Counterfeit Components: Emerging Trends in Counterfeit Detection and Mitigation


iNEMI Tech Topic Series: Counterfeit Components
Emerging Trends in Counterfeit Detection and Mitigation  
December 7, 2023

See other webinars in this series.

The third session looked at emerging technologies for detection and mitigation and reviewed results of an industry survey regarding experiences with counterfeit components and strategies used to mitigate risk. 

Understanding Counterfeit Electronics Detection and Mitigation

Navid Asadi, Ph.D. (University of Florida)  
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Navid reiterated the ongoing theme of each session that counterfeit components are on the rise and can be found in most any part of the global supply chain. He noted the many different sources of counterfeits and the various avenues through which they enter the supply chain, such as recycled sources, out-of-spec/defective parts as well as re-marked and cloned parts. He also reviewed different assurance opportunities that can help identify many counterfeits – PCB quality assurance, logo and text recognition, various optical inspections and SEM work, as well as material characterizations and both electronic and physical inspections. 

iNEMI Roadmap: Data for Material Handling and Conversion

Francis Mullany, Ph.D. (iNEMI)
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Francis gave a short update from the iNEMI Smart Manufacturing Roadmap that focused on data for material handling and conversion. This topic is germane to counterfeiting as having a higher level of data handling and control can mitigate areas of opportunity for counterfeiting of parts. The objective here is to have more “eyes” on the roadmap to make this a more robust area of review and the attendees were asked to join the roadmapping effort. 

Counterfeit Components Survey Results

Ben German (Intel Corporation) and Paul Hale, Ph.D. (NIST) 
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Ben and Paul presented an overview of the findings of iNEMI’s counterfeit component survey.  In summary, we had 33 respondents from a variety of functions within their respective organizations.  One result of note is that one-third of the respondents indicated they do not experience counterfeit components in their supply chain which lead to an open discussion with webinar participants about what resources were in use by companies to mitigate the risk of counterfeits. Primarily, risk is being minimized by sourcing only from OEMs or authorized distributors and by following the SAE AS5553 and AS6171 standards. Participants also discussed the need for improvements to the test and inspection process and whether sharing data from said activities would be of value to enhance their quality, security and design processes.   

About the Speakers

Navid Asadi, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
University of Florida

Navid Asadi is an Associate Professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the University of Florida with an affiliation to the Materials Science and Engineering department. He investigates novel techniques for IC counterfeit detection and prevention, system and chip level decomposition and security assessment, anti-reverse engineering, 3D imaging, invasive and semi-invasive physical assurance, supply chain security, etc. 

Dr. Asadi is director of the Security and Assurance (SCAN) lab house to more than $10M advanced imaging and characterization equipment. He also serves as the associate director of the Microelectronics Security Training (MEST) center which is a multi-million dollar program to train and reskill the professional engineers in the area of security. 

His projects are sponsored by various government agencies and industry including but not limited to NSF, AFRL, AFOSR, ONR, SRC, Meta, Cisco, and Analog Devices.

Francis (Frank) Mullany, Ph.D. 
Director of Roadmapping, iNEMI

Dr. Francis (Frank) Mullany came to iNEMI from a long career at Nokia Bell Labs, where he was a research strategist in Bell Labs Research, working with lead researchers to define roadmaps, research strategy and technology marketing. His 20 years of managerial and technical experience spans a broad range of wireless and networking technologies, from RF hardware to network slicing, and from real-time machine-learning inference engines to end-to-end orchestration. Frank joined Bell Labs in 1998, first with the Wireless Research Laboratory in the UK and then he helped establish Bell Labs Ireland in Dublin in 2004.  In 2013, he established Bell Labs’ Internet of Things research program before moving to the CTO organization to lead the Network Compliance, Reliability, Security and Corporate Standards organization.  In 2015, he returned to Bell Labs Research to take up a research strategy role.

Frank was Alcatel-Lucent’s representative on EPoSS, the European smart system industry association, and was the editor for the telecommunications section of the EPoSS Strategic Research Agenda. He received B.E. and Ph.D. degrees in Electronic Engineering from University College Dublin, National University of Ireland.

A central tenant in any system for combating counterfeit components and for assuring material and component reliability will be establishing root of (identity) trust, component/material traceability, easy access to test data, and overall data provenance. Dr. Mullany will outline the plan for an iNEMI roadmap activity to scope out the needs, gaps, challenges and technology solutions for these smart manufacturing systems, over a ten-year period.  Attendees will be invited to join this effort as a follow-up to the webinar series.

Ben German 
Senior Technical Program Manager
Supply Chain Security & Privacy
Intel Corporation

Ben German is a senior technical program manager with Intel’s Supply Chain Security & Privacy team responsible for Federal security compliance, counterfeit prevention and insider threat risk management programs. Based in Austin, Texas, he has over 17 years of experience as a leader and consultant in the global electronics manufacturing industry, with specializations in supply chain security and assurance, logistics and contract manufacturing risk management, asset protection and traceability, incident response, and supply chain threat intelligence.


Paul Hale, Ph.D.
Acting Program Manager
Metrology and Advanced Packaging with CHIPS Metrology

Dr. Paul Hale is the Acting Program Manager of Metrology and for Advanced Packaging with CHIPS metrology. Prior to this assignment, he was Chief of the RF Technology Division in NIST’s Communications Technology Laboratory. During his career at NIST, his work has focused on providing traceability to the International System of Units (SI) for the microwave, high-speed electronics, and optoelectronics industries, including the development of seven measurement services. 

Dr. Hale’s recent work has focused on traceable physical measurements for 5G supply chain security and coordinating the NIST R&D metrology effort in response to the CHIPS Act. He was the technical lead on the National Advanced Spectrum and Communication Test Network (NASCTN) test plan development for measuring the user equipment (UE) aggregate long term evolution (LTE) emissions in the AWS-3 Band in 2017 and technical co-lead on the NASCTN 3.5 GHz radar waveform measurements in 2016. 

Dr. Hale is an IEEE Fellow, an Ex Officio member of the International Electronics Manufacturing Initiative (iNEMI) Board of Directors and is chair of the RF working group (GT-RF) of the Consultative Committee on Electromagnetics at the BIPM. He has authored or coauthored over 110 technical publications. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering Physics and Doctor of Philosophy degree in Applied Physics, both from the Colorado School of Mines, Golden, CO.