Search This Blog

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Salt Lake Pub uses Facebook to recover stolen ID Scanner


Video Courtesy of


The video above tells the story.  Watch this kid steal the ID Scanner (which was just sitting on the counter).  The bar owner then posts the video on Facebook and next day gets his ID Scanner back. 


Couple lessons.


  • Don't leave any electronics - ID Scanners included, unattended in the bar
  • Have video surveillance installed at all key points of our club / bar
  • For young drinkers - assume everything you do is being recorded.


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Drivers License Coverage Map for ID Scanners

Each State has different types of state issued ID cards.  When purchasing an ID scanner, it is always good to know what kind of IDs you will scan to verify age.  Here is a map of the US illustrating the type of ID cards used in each state.


The states shaded in Yellow use PDF417 format, also known as 2D barcode.  The barcode looks like a box with black and white speckles.  You will need a ID scanner with a 2D barcode reader to check these IDs.


The states shaded in Blue use a magnetic stripe format.  The magnetic stripe looks the same as the magnetic strip on the back of a creditcard.  You will need an ID checker with a magnetic stripe reader to check these IDs.


The states shaded in Green have both 2D barcode and magnetic stripe on their ID cards.  For these IDs, you can use an ID card checker with either a 2D barcode reader or magnetic stripe reader or both.


There are some states with tricky ID cards.  Georgia licenses issued before November 2009 are not scannable by any ID checkers.  For Michigan, unless scanning the Enhanced Drivers License, the name and address will not be recorded as it is not embedded in the magnetic stripe.


Before purchasing a Drivers License Scanner, it is always a good idea to know what types of ID cards you will be checking and also knowing what types of ID cards are used in the surrounding states. 

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

ID Scanner - Company Background Requirements

When purchasing and ID Checker look at the ID Scanner features and just as important, investigate who is selling it to you.  Here is an ID Scanner story which should make the point.  A liquor store in Massachusetts purchased the scanner from a small reseller, who was quite familiar with checking drivers licenses and age verification, but did not actually make the hardware or write the software.  He was dependent on several companies, one a software company, another the manufacturer of the point of sale terminal, and one a drivers license reader company.  This solution worked until Massachusetts came out with a new drivers license.  At that point, the software needed an update to read the new license and that's when things fell apart.  The reseller was unable to get new software for several months and when finally available, his attempts to install the new software erased the old software, but he was unable to install the new software.  So now the liquor store has a system that is useless and ended up buying a CounterTop ID Scanner from a total solution company.

Monday, November 29, 2010

New ID Scanner offering

Recently saw a product which allows bars / clubs to share a master banned list.  This idea has been around for a long time - sharing a banned list between clubs - but before any clubs decided to purchase such a system, they should google 'barlink' which was a company in Canada which did this and ultimately was banned for offering the service.  Additionally, consumers were so upset, that they created web sites and listed the clubs to boycott.  So in theorey, this sounds like a good idea, the privacy issues of sharing a banned list quickly drown out any perceived benefits.


Sunday, November 28, 2010

Georgia Drivers License Finally Available

Georgia's new digital drivers license - sample images of front and back.

With Georgia's recent change, now every drivers license issued in the USA (and Canada) has a scannable PDF417 (or 2D) barcode or magnetic stripe. 

Saturday, November 27, 2010

ID Scanner - When to purchase one

Many businesses wait until their first ticket to purchase an ID Scanner. While this seems to be common, its sort of like buying a fire extingisher after a fire!  Sellers of Alcohol need to understand that they are at risk of fallen into the traps set by the under cover sting operations run in almost every state.  For those who are old enough to remember the old Fram Oil Filter commercial where the mechanic warned, "you can pay me now (i.e. pay for a good Fram oil filter) or you can pay me later (i.e. pay to have the auto engine rebuilt)."  The same is true for ID Scanners.  Either buy one before the first ticket or wait until you get the first ticket.  The smart operators don't wait.  What camp are you in?

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Watch ID Scanner AutoFill QuickBooks new customer

Here is a first cut of a Video showing IDWedge ID Scanner with QuickBooks software.

IDWedge is a drivers license scanner product that Autofills forms on a PC.

In this demo, a signle scan of a drivers license creates a new customer in QuickBooks, autofills the name/address information from the drivers license, puts the date of birth from the drivers license in the fax phone number field and the drivers license number in the alternative contact field.  It then creates an invoice. 

And it take about 3 seconds to do this.  Watch the video to learn or visit or to purchase a unit. 

Friday, November 12, 2010

ID Scanner versus Age Calculator

Was browsing Web and just found an age calculator that claims to eliminate human error.  Basically you key in the date of birth from the front of the drivers license and the calculator displays the age.  While the unit is certainly inexpensive, I must challenge its claim of eliminating human error.  If a clerk either mis-keys the date of birth on the keypad (i.e. typo) or if mis-reads the date of birth (i.e. sees a "3" when its really an "8"), then the age calculator will give you the wrong age.  A better claim would be eliminate math errors but a real ID Scanner eliminates all these issues. 

ID Scanner is not "Magic Wand"

ID Scanner is not magic wand - read this article - details risks of using id scanner without thinking.  ID scanner is a tool, like UV lights and 10x magnifiers - used during ID Checking process.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Nebraska's new Law on ID Scanners

In April of 2010, Nebraska changed the law on the use of ID Scanners. Originally the law prevented the user or scanner from saving any data. Now the law allows for ID Scanner to save the ID number and/or the calculated age of ID presented. The scanner may not retain name or address information. So now the law gives the merchant some ability to substantiate or prove an ID was checked while still addressing privacy concerns of card holders.

Here is summary

....§60-4,111.01 requires that a sign be posted when ID scanning is done on the premises. The only information that may be kept is the Identification Number and age indicated on the Identification. YOU MAY NOT store names, dates of birth, addresses or physical descriptions.
Before purchasing any kind of age verification devise ensure that it can be modified to only collect the information allowed by law.

Click here summary provided by Nebraska Liquor Control Commission
or the original

Here is the original law,111.01

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Utah Law ID Scanner Requirements

The Utah Department of Alcohol Beverage Control does not provide a list of approved ID Scanners or electronic age verification devices. Below is a summary of the requirements. The most unique aspect of Utah's new law is the requirement that data be deleted in seven (7) days or 168 hours. This section of the law appears to be a compromise between privacy concerns and the needs of merchants/law enforcement. The exact rule may be and is summarized below.

● An electronic age verification device:
a) must contain the technology to read a magnetic stripe and a two dimensional (“2d”) stack symbology (bar code), or an alternate technology capable of electronically verifying the proof of age; and
b) shall be capable of reading a valid state issued driver’s license, a valid state issued identification card, a valid military identification card, or a valid passport;
c) shall have a screen that displays no more than a person’s name, age, ID number, birth date, gender, ID status & expiration date; and
d) shall have the capability of electronically storing the name, age, ID number, birth date, gender, ID status & expiration date for seven days (168 hours) including the time and date the proof of age was scanned.
● If the proof of age cannot be scanned electronically, an alternative method of verifying an individual’s proof of age shall include a record or log showing the type, number, and expiration date of the ID; the date the ID was presented, the individual’s name and date of birth.
● Any data collected either electronically or otherwise, may only be used for the purpose of verifying an individual’s proof of age and may not be retained by the licensee in a data base for mailing, advertising, or promotional activity, to acquire personal information to make inappropriate personal contact with the individual, and shall be retained for a period of seven days from the date on which it was acquired, after which it must be deleted. The data collected may be acquired by law enforcement, or other investigative agencies.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Utah Law Requires ID Scanners for Age Verification

March 30, 2010

The Law allows private clubs to covert to a public club if they use an ID Scanner to check people who look younger than 35 years out.

Its an effort to make the state boost the state's $6 billion a year tourism industry and remove Utah's notoriously quirky liquor laws. Tourists in search of a beer and a bite to eat after hitting the ski slopes frequently walk out of bars once told they're for members only. A separate membership, costing at least $4, is required at every bar.

The new law will also allow restaurants to take down partitions known as "Zion Curtains" that separate bartenders from customers in restaurants. Currently, bartenders or servers must walk drinks around the bar before they're allowed to serve them.

The name "Zion Curtain" is a reference to the state's religious heritage as the home of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which tells its members to abstain from alcohol. The Mormon church counts about 60 percent of the state's population among its members

As part of a compromise, the state will impose tougher DUI and underage drinking penalties. Utah will also become the first state in the country to require bars to scan the ID of anyone who appears younger than 35 before being allowed to enter.

Information obtained through the ID scan, including name, age and address, will be kept on site for seven days so it can be accessed by law enforcement, despite concerns that keeping the information is a violation of privacy.

Article from

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Indiana requires all purchasers to show ID effective 7/1/2010

Effective 7/1/2010

New ID LawIC 7.1-5-10-23 states that employees who are selling alcoholic beverages for off premise consumption must require all individuals making a carry out purchase to show a photo I.D. To view the statute in its entirety, click here. In some rare instances, an individual may not have a photo I.D. If the individual wishes to make a purchase for off premise consumption, he/she may complete the following Statement of Age Form and provide it to the permittee, along with two forms of identification showing the purchaser to be at least twenty-one years of age.

Here is the new language

Sec. 23. (a) It is a Class B
misdemeanor for a permittee or an employee or agent of a
permittee to recklessly, knowingly, or intentionally sell, barter,
exchange, provide, or furnish another person an alcoholic beverage
for consumption off the licensed premises without first requiring
the person to produce:
(1) a driver's license;
(2) an identification card issued under IC 9-24-16-1 or a
similar card issued under the laws of another state or the
federal government; or
(3) a government issued document;
bearing the person's photograph and birth date showing that the
person is at least twenty-one (21) years of age.
(b) In a criminal or administrative proceeding, it is a defense to
a charge under this section that the individual to whom the
permittee or employee or agent of the permittee sold, bartered,
exchanged, provided, or furnished alcoholic beverages for
consumption off the licensed premises was or reasonably appeared
to be more than fifty (50) years of age.

Note section (b) - it appears one has a defense if the person 'looks' over 50 years old.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

NY fines Utica for marketing with ID Scanner

This event was a first in NY as far as we know. In fact, this is the first time we are aware of any state taking action against a business using data collected from an ID Scanner. Clearly, any organization using an ID Scanner needs to review the laws in their state and perhaps a lawyer familiar with local regulations.

Article from


Hollyrock principal used ID reader to validate proof of age upon entry, later used stored address information to send marketing materials
Manager must pay $5,000 fine and immediately stop using scanner to retrieve personal information

UTICA, N.Y. (October 29, 2009) - Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that his office has stopped an area bar manager from using an identification verification scanner to retrieve addresses and personal information for the purpose of sending out unsolicited marketing materials.

Through an agreement with Attorney General Cuomo’s Office, Matthew S. Demar, managing employee of the Hollyrock bar, located on Varick St. in Utica, must stop using the scanner in such a manner, destroy the personal information he wrongfully obtained and pay a $5,000 penalty to the state.

“This individual improperly used the personal information of customers to promote his business,” said Attorney General Cuomo. “By doing so, he violated state law regarding the use of personal information and now must stop this practice and destroy the records he illegally obtained.”

Demar employed a scanner to check the validity of a person’s identification. However, the scanner also has the ability to store and retrieve the information read.

New York state’s Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Law permits the use of a scanner only to determine whether a person is 21 years of age or older as a precondition for the purchase of an alcoholic beverage. The statute prohibits the resale or dissemination of the information to any third person and it prohibits using that information for any advertising or marketing.

Attorney General Cuomo’s investigation determined that Demar collected the name, address, date of birth, gender, driver’s license number and expiration date of more than 5,000 individuals. Demar then sent a pamphlet advertising various events at Hollyrock to these former patrons.

Attorney General Cuomo urges all consumers to be cautious with their personal information to avoid becoming a victim of identity theft. Tips and important information can be found online at Consumers who believe they are being defrauded or wrongly targeted by any business may contact the Utica regional office by calling 315-793-2225.

The Hollyrock case was handled by Assistant Attorney General-in-Charge of the Utica Regional Office Joel Marmelstein.