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Low-cost authentication and identification methods for removable data storage cartridges are the focus of ongoing research. Manufacturers commonly use tags or markers to authenticate and identify commercial products. However, the authentication and identification of removable data storage cartridges must be automated at a very low cost. The varying requirements of specific systems have driven the progression of Iomega's penny tag technology. Unlike other security methods, these "penny tag" technologies must be automated for use in a removable data storage drive.