Trust is Built on Security

Trust is a currency whose purchasing power cannot be overestimated. Also: „Anyone who creates trust creates stable values,“ says Dr. Wolfram Seidemann, the CEO of Giesecke+Devrient Currency Technology. A conversation about the inspiring powers of stability in times of change.

In 1919, the industrialist Robert Bosch said, „Better to lose money than to lose trust“ – is that still valid today?

More than ever. Particularly these days, in a world that is constantly changing, trust has an almost incalculable worth. Trust is a vital foundation for every functioning economy. Only if people trust in their political, financial and judicial systems will they be willing and able to enter into any transaction.

What do you need to create an environment of trust?

Looking at our specific business, I would say reliability, transparency, honest eye-to-eye communication; and the aspiration of getting the right solution for each individual problem. Besides investing in technologies, investing in company culture, in processes, and in communication, including the way we work together, will be crucial for competition in the future.

All forms of payment have to be reliable, secure and efficient, be they analog or digital.


Dr. Wolfram Seidemann, CEO of Giesecke+Devrient Currency Technology

Does your claim „creating confidence“ also means „creating values“?

Yes. And in order to create value, you must question existing ideas and concepts. That takes courage, which is why we need an open and transparent culture. Only then can we optimize and redesign ourselves, our products, our ideas, our markets. Whether it’s in the family, in the company, or in the global economy, trust is built on security. You need to feel secure in the knowledge that even if you fail when you try something new, not all is lost.

On the frontline where systems become smarter and more productive

No change without stability?

Let me put it this way: the biggest changes happen, for better or for worse, when stability is under threat. Usually, at this point, changes are for the worse and spin out of control. Intended changes, innovation in our field, happen when you work within a controlled environment. Stability is key. And we are lucky in that respect because central banks the world over have done an admirable job in providing stable currencies which equals stable economies.

What does this mean in a world where the digital is displacing the analog?

Well, security is at the heart of stability, both in the digital and in the analog realm. It is therefore at the top of our agenda and a natural part of our strategy, in accordance with the motto „security by design.“ All forms of payment have to be reliable, secure and efficient, be they analog or digital. Looking at the cash cycle as a whole, efficiency gains are high because of increasing automation. We are the frontrunners for an automated cash cycle. Systems are becoming faster, smarter and more productive. Plus, they are increasingly designed to collect and analyze data in the cash cycle.

Which kind of data?

We have been using digital track and trace applications in production for a long time to ensure that every banknote is being accounted for. The potential to gather and use data has grown exponentially. Every banknote collects data during its life cycle – anonymized of course – on durability, environment, distribution. Today, we are increasingly able to analyze these data and use them to optimize the cash cycle. Big data is a buzzword, however, it is driving corresponding technologies.

Read the complete interview

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Security, confidence and risk-trust-management become the most strategic elements of entrepreneurial activity – especially when it comes to money. G+D provides answers for the payments of today and tomorrow.


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