Choosing the Right Type of Security Packing Tape for Your Business

Posted on July 7th, 2022 / Jesse Drori / / Tamper Evident Packing Tape
  1. What is security packing tape?
  2. Evaluation criteria
  3. The different kinds of security packing tapes
  4. Next step

What is security packing tape?

Manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailers in e-commerce typically use security packing tape to protect packages and containers.  

Though called different names, such as evidence tamper tape, security void tape, tamper-proof tape or self-voiding tape, the goal is always the same: to detect and prevent tampering.   

Unattended packages are often subject to theft, pilferage or adulteration. When boxes are sealed with regular tape, they can easily be opened and resealed without anybody noticing the difference. Whereas a truly tamper-evident tape would leave proof of the alteration. 

Tamper Evident Packing Tape Unvoided
Tamper evident packing tape before it has been removed.
Tamper Evident Packing Tape Voided
Tamper evident packing tape after an attempt to remove it.

It’s a common mistake to assume that all tapes with a VOID message are tamper evident. Nothing could be further from the truthHere is what you need to know to choose the best security packing tape for your needs. 

Evaluation criteria

Prepare a list of criteria to help you compare and rank the different kinds of security packing tape based on your unique needs.  

It may include: 

  • Your business objectives 
  • The intended use 
  • The tape application process 
  • Your budget 

Business objectives 

Packing tape is just packing tape, right? It may look that waybut it can be so much more than that.  

Once your customers become aware of the benefits tamper evident tape can bring, they’ll never go back to regular tape, especially if the price difference is negligible.

The intended use 

Do you need a security packing tape that adheres equally well to all surfaces, such as paper, metal or plastic? Depending on what you want to do, versatility can be an important criteria. 

Naturally, certain types of sealing tape are more suitable for rough handling and shipping than others.  

Besides, companies that are transiting packages in a severe climate will need a type of security packing tape that will retain its properties when exposed to extreme hot or cold temperatures.  

The tape application process 

There are essentially two options: applying the tape manually with a tape dispenser or using a carton sealing machine. 

While it is generally more efficient to use a carton sealing machine, it really depends on the volume of shipments and the level of automation of the business 

Your budget 

It’s easy to just look at the price of a roll  

To ensure you’re comparing apples to apples, look at the length and width of the tape as well as the hidden costs, such as duties and shipping costs. 

The different kinds of security packing tapes

Destructible PVC tamper-evident tape 

This is considered to be the precursor of today’s tamper-evident tape. It was widely used a while ago because there was no better option.  

It is likely to tear and crack due to rough handling during transport. As a result, you often get “false positive” outcomes: it looks like someone tampered with it, even when that’s not the case. 

Also, because it is so fragile, PVC tape is actually not the best tape to keep a box closed. The weight of the box’s contents could easily break the tape. 

Generally speaking, it is more expensive than security packing tape, which is much more reliable. 

PVC Tape unbroken
PVC Tape 
PVC Tape Broken
PVC Tape-after removal attempt

Wateractivated tape 

This kind of tape is often used for e-commerce shipments. You’ve probably seen it on packages you’ve received from Amazon.  

Being made of paper, it is more environmentally friendly than other tapes. However, boxes sealed with water-activated tape are generally easy to open, especially if the tape hasn’t been applied properly.  

You could also argue that water-activated tape is not truly tamper-evident. It doesn’t leave a residue showing the box has been tampered with. You could reapply a similar tape on the same surface and nobody would see the difference. 

Applying this kind of tape manually is a bit of a challenge. That’s why you generally need an automatic tape application machines. This makes sense for a company like Amazon, because it handles a very large volume of packages. But not all businesses do.

Water Activated Tape
Plain Water Activate Tape

Fake tamper-evident tape (Yep, there is such a thing!) 

Beware, not all tapes that claim to be tamper-evident are.  

A fake tape may have a warning on it saying it is tamperevident, but that message does not transfer to the box. This tape can be peeled off slowly without damaging the box or showing signs of tampering. 

It may temporarily deter thieves, but once they’ve figured out how to bypass it, you won’t be better off than if you were using regular tape. And you’ll be paying more for what amounts to plain old packing tape! 

Fake Tamper Evident Tape
Fake tamper evident tape before it is removed.

Total transfer tamper-evident security void tape 

This is the best kind of tape to safeguard products.  

Whenever someone accidentally or intentionally removes tamper-evident tape, it leaves its void residue on the surface to indicate it has been tampered with. 

This “proof of tampering” often takes the form of a VOID or OPENED message, which can be personalized, to provide consumers with an extra-layer of protection. 

As well, you can use it with a regular tape gun for easy and quick application 

Tamper Evident Tape
The real deal tamper evident tape after someone has removed it.

Next step

Still not sure which packing tape is best for you? Drop us a note and we’ll send you some free samples.  

We help packaging supply wholesalers maximize customer satisfaction and repeat business, while gaining market share through product innovation.  

Unlike other tamper-evident solutions on the market, we have a one-step production process. This has enabled us to offer topquality tamper-evident security packing tape at an unbeatable market price. 

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