ID Scanners

ID scanners come in several different flavors


People love automation. It makes our lives easier and we can, quickly, become dependent upon it. When employees can scan an ID, they frequently relinquish the duty of making a comparison of the ID to the presenter. They also relinquish the duty of making other assessments (intoxication, nervousness ect.) It’s human nature to take the easiest path and rely on the machine.


Here is a quick description of the 3 basic types of scanners on the market today:  


Magnetic strip scanners – Read only the information encoded on the  magnetic strip.  These are the least reliable as the technology required to encode the magnetic stripe on an ID so simple that most counterfeiters do it.

#5   ja09_003




Bar code scanners – Reads the bar codes printed on the back of some IDs.  These scanners are more complex and usually more expensive.  This device reads the graphic 1D and 2D bar codes used on ID to determine if the data is there.  


1D bar code

1 D bar code

2D bar code

2 D bar code

The technology to create bar codes that will read on scanners is also very simple and many counterfeit IDs will successfully scan on even the most expensive bar code reader.  

Bar code scanner  barcode scanner 2

Multi point scanners – Reads the bar code, optically scans front/back of ID to detect security features.  

PC based scanner

The accuracy of these machine varies from good to bad.  Some can be updated on-line to keep current information on new IDs.  None of these devices will detect a genuine ID being used by someone the ID wasn’t issued to.  


By comparison, the multi-point scanning systems are the best but are substantially more expensive.


Here is a posting I found recently on Tumblr about getting fake IDs:

Pull off of Tumblr Fake ID pages.

Pull off of Tumblr Fake ID pages.


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