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Drivers License Scanner USB iPad Keyboard

How to connect an ID Scanner or Drivers License Scanner and a PC keyboard to an iPad.  Use a standard PC USB keyboard and this Drivers License / ID Scanner to input data on an iPad.

The iPad can’t supply much power, so an externally powered USB hub is used to power both the ID Scanner and the USB keyboard.  A USB/SD card adapter for the iPad is connected to the iPad.  The USB is connected to the USB port on this adapter.  Finally the USB keyboard and USB ID Scanner is plugged into the USB port.  No software drivers are required on the iPad. 

Check this video



Fake IDs and ID Scanners

Don’t sell ID Scanners as Fake ID Checkers

It amazes me when I see new companies enter the ID Scanner market claiming their products stops fake IDs.  I saw a video from a new ID Scanner CEO where, in response to the question “can it validate or spoke a fake ID”, he said – “yes, thats one of the great reasons bars should get it.”

WOW – Talk about being uninformed – or worse – misrepresentation.  I’ll assume he is just naive. 

Now let me explain a couple points about ID Scanners (including his).  It reads the barcode on the back and then extracts license data.  It does NOT go on-line to the DMV or any other system to verify any information.  So if I make a good copy of your drivers license and put my photo on the front of it, it will scan and display your name but the ID will have my picture.  This is true of most ID Scanners.  Only ID Scanners that go on-line to some central data base have a chance of catching a fake.  There are countless stories of high quality fake IDs coming from China.  And if you visit these fake ID web sites, they promise they will scan.  We’ve tested these Fake IDs and they are really good.  They have microprinting, UV ink, holograms, ghost printing and the data printed on the front of the ID matches the data encoded on the back.  So, the only way to catch these fakes is the run them through DMV database which is not gonna happen for free nor would it make economic sense for a system at a bar.

So, don’t be fooled about Fake ID Scanners.  Yes, they will catch some fake IDs but their real purpose is the record the data to prove an ID was checked.  Here is the law for NY’s Affirmative Defense legisaltion – which is what a bar owner would claim if somebody got served and the bar used an ID Scanner. 

One final point is 2/3rds of the IDs in the hands of minors are NOT fake.  They are borrowed IDs so if the 1″ photo on the ID looks like the person using it, its almost impossible to stop.   So you don’t buy an ID Scanner to detect Fake IDs, you buy it to be able to claim an Affirmative Defense when a minor gets served.


Social Media and ID Scanners

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Interesting ID Scanner concept in the press lately.  Use an ID Scanner to collect information about a bar’s customers, let a 3rd party collect the data and then let the 3rd party sell the data via an Apple iPhone app.  The premise is consumers will want to pay a fee to find bars with certain male/female ratios or age groups or perhaps social economic status based on their zip codes.  It’s an interesting idea.

But like many Internet Businesses, one needs to understand the value proposition from all perspectives; the consumer, the nightclub owner and the 3rd party data service provider.  Lets look at the Night Club owner’s value proposition first.

Night Club owners value proposition.

The bar owner needs to purchase the ID Scanner and is not paid for selling his customer data.  So the Night Club owner does not directly benefit from participating in the system.  What value and risks does providing this data have to the establishment?  Its basically in how consumers using the mobile app respond to the data generated from the establishment.  If consumers flock to the business because the data makes the club look hot, great.  If they go else where, trouble.   

Night Club Owner Risks

  • Customers may not like having their data sold without consent.  If clients understand that they are now a data point in some mobile app, will they still want to be scanned?
  • What safeguards ensure to protect customer’s data?
  • What if a virus gets into the ID Scanner and starts sending client data to a competitors or worse to identity thieves.
  • What happens if the data shown to consumers is not accurate?
  • How is fairness ensured?  What prevents other bars from manipulating their demographics by only scanning young girls and manually reviewing male clients? 
  • Why should a bar let itself become a dot on some mobile app where it can’t control the data presented to the public?


Mobile App Users.

  • What prevents a bar owner from accurately scanning?  Say a bar owner scans all females and skips every other male?
  • What prevents bar owner from skipping older people and scanning just younger clients?
  • What prevents a bar owner from having a stack of female IDs and scanning a bunch at the start of the night to make the club look hot?
  • Critical Mass – say only 5% of the bars in a city participate?
  • How timely is the data?  Since the ID Scanner only scans people on the way in, it can grow stale by the time I get to the bar. 

Night Club Patron

  • Where is my data going?  How is this system using my data?  The club owner is not in control.  I may trust the club owner, but he may not even understand what the ID Scanner is doing with my data.  Will he know if the 3rd Party provider changes terms of service?
  • If there is a data breach, who is responsible?


3rd Party System Provider

The hope if the system provider is that all players in the scheme are honest, participate and they make money from selling this data to consumers via the app.  The challenges of launching a scheme like this are:

  • Gaining critical mass – how does one get all bars in a city to join?  Especially the bars, which have an ID Scanner from another company.  Why spend the money on a new scanner?
  • Developing the Technology – One has to build and manage a system which operates in a real time and serves thousands of clients.  Its no trivial task to collect data from hundreds or thousands of ID Scanners, process the data and then serve it up to consumers using a mobile app.  Its easy to do when there are 10 bars and its just one laptop acting as the backend.  Scaling it is non-trivial.
  • Ensuring security of a giant networked system.  What if a virus gets into the system and then start sending data from the scanners to a third party.
  • Ensuring the systems stay on WiFi and connected.  Some bars may just unplug from the system.  
  • Liability for Identity Theft.  Insurance should be purchased in the event this system inadvertently starts disclosing personal information.
  • How many cities are worth targeting.  Will the system work in Houston Texas?  How about Albany New York?  Clearly its harder to justify in smaller population centers.

So like many Internet Business Cases, if one starts looking at the value proposition from all perspectives, one can better understand its viability.  Any investor in such a scheme should understand these risks




Fake ID Scanner Web Sites

Beware of False Internet ID Scanner Web Sites

When shopping for an ID Scanner, look out for web sites which claim to be leaders in the ID Scanner industry.  Beware of sites which do not have a phone number and no product information.  Just an email address that will get you a phone call back in an hour.  These sites are typically set up by individuals who are not experts in the field and really some sort stay at home sales person hoping to find a newbie. 

When buying for a “leader in the industry” go to the about us page and take their contact information and plug it into google maps.  If the address is shared with a mail box etc or shipping/package store, they are probably a virtual ID Scanner company renting a mail box.  If google maps shows you a street view of a residential property, again not really working with a “leader in the ID Scanner industry” but instead a stay at home business that is reselling a product. 

These resellers come and go.  If you need support 6 months from now, contact a company that is non-virtual, has a rating with the, and answers the phone when you call them. 

New Michigan License now works with bar code ID Scanner

Shown above is the back of the drivers license.  The magnetic stripe is like the old license and should not be scanned in ID scanners because only three fields are availabe – date of birth, id number and expiration date.  When checking IDs, scan the 2D barcode in the ID Scanner as this will providing name and address information which make verifiing the ID easier. 

There are several new security features in the new ID.



  • The card also features the laser-perforated word “MICH,” which can be viewed when held up to a light.
  • The cardholder’s photo and date of birth are on the back of the card, viewable under black light.
  • The front laminate of the cards includes the current full-color shape of a Great Seal, viewable using a standard off-the-shelf black light, and a new tri-color optically variable image of a bridge and the word “Michigan” that appears and disappears when viewed from different angles.


Now every state’s ID has a 2D barcode which means the days of the magnetic stripe ID Scanner are coming to an end.


Lead Capture with ID Scanner

Lead Capture with an ID Scanner

Iphone like keyboard helps speed lead capture on this ID Scanner. 


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Quiklead software developed by TokenWorks Inc helps marketers rapidly capture attendee contact and response data.  Scanning the drivers license populates the contact information in about one second.  Then a brand ambassador complete a form with attendee response to custom questions such as which product are you current using and what do you like about our products.  An automated Lead Capture solutions is vastly superior to paper based solutions which often are unreadable and have the delay and cost of manual data entry.   

Normal 0 Attendee email information is captured using common domain pull down menu and phone numbers are entered using a large 3×3 numeric keypad.


New York Police Urging ID Scanners for Night Clubs / Bars in NYC.

In an article today in the NY Post by JAMIE SCHRAM, Police Bureau Chief, the New York Police Department is pushing club owners to purchase an ID Scanner.  According to the article, its part of an anti-terror effort, but the article fails to mention that ID Scanners are part of the NYC best bar practices and Summer is coming.  It could be an effort by Police to ensure there are no repeats of the underage patrons getting seriously hurt a few years back, which resulted in the best practices document being published. 

Read more:

Liquor Stores in North Kingstown received ID Scanners with State Grant

Watch these two videos about all four liquor stores in North Kingstown RI receiving an IDVisor Z22 CounterTop ID Scanner.  One of the articles takes a high tech slant and talks about catching Fake IDs while the other is a bit more balanced.  Reporters often try to make the story more sensational so watch both videos. This is the second video and is not entirely accurate about Fake IDs.

ID Scanners at Airport – its going to happen – just not the way you think.

Chuck Schumer is pushing for new ID Scanners at the airport.  See press article below.  I’m sure one or two ID Scanner vendors will be racing to do a press release about this effort to help their stock price but I think this may be more of a software upgrade versus a hardware deployment.

If done intelligently, this effort could be much easier than many think because the airlines are already scanning the 2D bar codes on your boarding pass when you get on the plane.  Plus the passenger lists are already being screened by the airlines for individuals on the no-fly list.  So its really just a software upgrade for them to scan the 2D bar codes on drivers licenses. 

The process would could work like this.  When you arrive at the ticket counter, they scan drivers license and print your boarding pass.  They could extend same gate terminals to security check point and scan both again and then if necessary scan both documents at the gate before boarding.  And this sort of system makes sense.  We need to provide the TSA with better tools.  Currently its laughable to see them look at your license with a magnifier glass and Ultra Violet Flash light.  Not having an automated tool at TSA is nuts. So the question is not whether they will have ID Scanners at the airport, the issue is how it will be implemented.

Senator pushes for new ID scanner at airport


Updated: Wednesday, 23 Mar 2011, 5:45 PM EDT
Published : Wednesday, 23 Mar 2011, 5:45 PM EDT

CHEEKTOWAGA, N.Y. (WIVB) – A new machine to scan passenger ID’s may be tested at the Buffalo-Niagara International Airport.

Senator Chuck Schumer is calling on the federal government to use the Buffalo airport as a test site for this technology. Schumer believes these machines would have prevented the recent TSA drug scandal. The government has already chosen JFK as the large airport test site, now they are looking for a medium-size airport site.

The machines Schumer is pushing to test at the airport can electronically scan passenger identifications to weed out fake ID’s and detect aliases.

Lead Capture using ID Scanner

Check out this video of an ID Scanner used at trade shows to capture sales leads.  Easy to modify for waste management / recycling operations, visitor managment and Experiential Marketing campaigns.