Tips and Tricks to Spot Fake IDs in a Bar

Complete Information About Tips and Tricks to Spot Fake IDs in a Bar

You’re a bouncer at a popular bar or perhaps work as a cashier, checking IDs for age-restricted purchases. You must know that some people will try to slip past you with fake identification. With that, you are responsible for prohibiting the phonies and keeping the establishment compliant with the law. However, how can you be sure which IDs are legitimate?

With so many designs and security features, remaining on top of the game can be tough. That’s where these tips and tricks come in handy, as they will help you spot fake IDs like a pro.

In this article, we will know the different methods used by counterfeiters in detecting fake IDs and explain how you can easily identify them. You may even check with 360 Training for more tips. So, without further ado, let’s get started and become familiar with the techniques and factors to look for when inspecting IDs. 

Everything to Know About Spotting Fake IDs

Having a hard time detecting fake IDs? At 360 Training, we will help you with tips to detect fake IDs. 

Cheap Laminate 

Keep an eye out for cheap ID lamination, for it’s often considered a fake ID. When examining an ID, pay close attention to the quality and texture of the laminate.

Legitimate IDs typically have high-quality laminates that are smooth, uniform in appearance, and resistant to tampering. 

On the other hand, low-quality lamination comes with air bubbles trapped inside or can be quite visible inconsistencies in thickness and texture. In most cases, they might even start peeling away from the card at the edges.

Try running your fingers over its surface to see any irregularities or roughness to easily know if an ID comes with such a cheap laminate. You can also hold it up to the light and look for any unevenness in its shine or reflections that may indicate poor adhesion between layers.


You’ll also want to pay attention to the 

holograms, as they can be a dead giveaway when it comes to identifying counterfeit identification cards. Genuine IDs usually have holograms embedded within the laminate or printed directly onto the card’s surface. 

These holograms are intricate and come with a complex design. That said, it makes them much more difficult for counterfeiters to replicate. 

Ensure you always familiarize yourself with the specific designs of holograms of various ID types, such as state driver’s licenses and passports. 

Beware of any discrepancies in the color, size, or placement of the hologram compared to the valid ID. Authentic holograms also have certain visual effects that change when viewed under different angles and lighting conditions.

So you must always double-check if all the information within the hologram corresponds correctly with any other details on the ID itself before it can be considered genuine.

Laser Embossing

Don’t overlook the laser embossing when you examine your ID. This is another crucial security feature that could help determine the authenticity. 

Laser embossing is also a process where information or images are engraved onto the surface of ID using a concentrated laser beam. This may have raised lettering and symbols that are often difficult to replicate with low-quality equipment.

Know that authentic IDs are crisp and have well-defined edges on the embossed elements. However, fake IDs may show inconsistencies or poor-quality engraving.

Laser Perforation

Another key security feature to examine is laser perforation. This can offer valuable insight into the ID’s authenticity. The laser perforation also involves small ID card holes that could form a certain pattern or design.

It also represents the issuing state’s abbreviation, logo, or other distinguishing symbol. When held out of the light, the patterns should be easily visible and crisp. 

Genuine IDs also have precise and consistent perforations that are challenging to replicate with inferior equipment. When examining an ID for laser perforation, pay close attention to the holes’ shape, size, and pattern alignment.

If you take time and carefully inspect the subtle details, you’ll be better equipped to spot fake IDs and protect yourself from fraud.

UV Imagery

Inspecting UV imagery on the ID card can also be crucial to determine its authenticity. Genuine IDs usually have certain patterns or designs that can only be visible under UV light.

When you examine the ID under UV light, look for specific images or text that should appear on your state’s issued identification cards. Make yourself familiar with what you want to expect. 

When examining the ID under UV light, you must consider the clarity and UV imagery quality. Authentic IDs will have crisp and well-defined images or text that correspond exactly with what is expected for that particular state. 

On fake IDs, however, you may find blurry, misaligned, incorrect patterns or even completely absent UV features due to inferior production methods used by counterfeiters.

Micro Printing

This technique involves printing small text or images that are hard to replicate without specialized equipment. It’s a powerful tool for identifying counterfeit identification documents.

You’ll need a magnifying glass or a high-quality smartphone camera with a zoom function to spot microprinting on an ID. Look closely at various areas of the ID, especially around the photo and personal information fields.

You should find tiny lines of text or intricate patterns that aren’t visible to the naked eye. If you can’t locate any micro printing, or if the printed details appear blurred or smudged, this could indicate that the ID is fake.

Special Materials

Authentic IDs are usually made from materials such as PVC (polyvinyl chloride), Teslin, or polycarbonate, which have specific properties that allow them to withstand wear and tear and maintain their integrity over time. 

These materials also have unique characteristics when it comes to printing and lamination, making it difficult for fraudsters to replicate the same quality found in genuine IDs.

To spot fake IDs based on special materials, pay close attention to the feel and flexibility of the card. Counterfeiters often use substandard materials like thin plastic laminates that may feel flimsy or peel apart easily. Additionally, some fake IDs might not have the correct thickness or weight compared to authentic ones.


Now that you know how to spot fake IDs, it would be much easier to know those who try to purchase drinks, especially minors. Look out for cheap laminates, holograms, laser embossing, perforation, UV imagery, micro printing, and special materials.

Trust your instincts and pay attention to details even if the crowd in the bar keeps coming. Once you know how to detect fake IDs, you can automatically decline enablers. Keep practicing these tips and tricks; soon enough, you’ll be a pro at identifying counterfeit IDs. Stay vigilant, and don’t let any sneaky fakes slip by!

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