August 24, 2018 glimpse_team

Can your bar staff spot a fake ID?

Running a bar is no small task. Aside from the demanding business challenges that arise on a consistent basis and the unexpected crises that have to be dealt with, making it seem like being successful is a miracle to some. Don’t forget to include the fact that when alcohol is involved, there are added liabilities and legal responsibilities that your establishment must consider and adhere to in order to keep everyone safe and the doors of your business open. Aside from the life-threatening situations that every bar owner and manager must be aware of, one such challenge that continues to be an issue for every bar across the country is spotting fake IDs. Underage drinking is a serious problem and ensuring that you and your staff are as knowledgeable as possible in order to minimize and hopefully eliminate the problem from your bar.
There is no end-all way to tell if an ID is fake unless you can run every ID through a scanner like the TSA agents do at the airport. However, that are several ways to help spot even a well-made fake.

Here are some of the best ways how to tell if an ID is fake

  • Spotting the real one – sometimes you may be able to see their real ID in the wallet or in the contents of their pocket while they are trying to hand you the fake. Sometimes they may even hand you the real one and solve the problem for you!
  • Body language – sometimes you might not be able to catch the ID but picking up on suspicious body language can help pick out potentials. Signs of being nervous like awkward eye contact can be a dead giveaway. If you suspect a fake, ask them to recite the information on the card to test if it is real.
  • Horoscope – this one might seem like a stretch but asking an individual what their horoscope sign is for the birthday on the card can be an easy way to catch a fake ID. This question can throw off even the most prepared.
  • Misspellings – it may be hard to believe but even the best looking fake ID’s sometimes have spelling or abbreviation errors. State issued licenses will be error-free.
  • Photo check – while many things can change in a short amount of time between when the picture was taken and when the person is standing in front of you, but most fakes can be caught by closely looking at the photo. Siblings often times try to use real ID’s if they resemble each other.
  • Description – weight, hair color and eye color can all change but height is something that is very hard to fake.
  • Common states – Florida, Pennsylvania, Connecticut and Illinois are the most commonly used states for fake ID’s. If you come across one of these and suspicions arise, especially if it is an out of state one, refer to other signs in order to ensure legitimacy.
  • State outlines, symbols or letters – most state ID’s will a laser-etched or holographic outline of the state or other distinguishing marks that can only be seen when in the right light. While this can be faked, quality is hard to do.
  • Raised photo – real ID’s are completely flat. Fake ones that have had a picture pasted on top will be noticeably raised.

These are some of the quickest and easiest ways to identify fake ID’s that you and your staff may come across while running your bar. Being diligent and aware is the best precaution against preventing underage drinking from occurring. Getting caught unknowingly serving underage patrons can cause a mess of problems and potentially hurt your business is just one challenge that bar owners face on a regular basis. At the end of the day, the goal of your bar or restaurant is to bring in more revenue than money spent.

Glimpse helps owners and managers identify areas of risk with regards to transactions and employee behavior. Utilizing video bar inventory tracking and analysis software, Glimpse provides audited reports that provide managers and owners the opportunity to correct deviations from SOPs and ultimately capture more revenue while reducing costs. To learn more about how we can help your bar or restaurant be more successful, visit today to schedule your free demo.