As printing technology and Photoshopping software become even more sophisticated, fraudsters have the ability to produce increasingly sophisticated fake ID cards for the ever-present market of young teens who want to appear older.
Even as recently as 10 years ago, fake IDs used to be relatively easy to detect. Poorly printed, with runny, muddled colours and blurry, cheap holograms, most fakes wouldn’t stand up to even casual scrutiny from a club bouncer. Accordingly, they were usually cheap, bought for £10-£20 by teens who hoped that they could quickly flash the card and get waved on in by idle doormen or served by a disinterested bartender.
Today, fake ID cards are a whole new business. With even a moderate amount of Photoshop experience and quality printers, fraudsters can mass-produce relatively convincing fakes and disseminate them without even having to meet their customers as they take orders via the Internet.
Although the time it takes to make fakes has been hugely reduced, the price has skyrocketed both in Britain and America as teenagers are prepared to pay more for an ID that has a good chance of passing security checks. David Myers, an identity-card expert in Florida said that in America a high-quality fake card could be bought for between $35 and $50 about decade ago. In an article for The Economist, he claimed that the asking price today has risen to approximately ten times that amount.
The accessibility to customers and ease of delivery of the cards has also led to many ID mills being set up in China and parts of south-east Asia. A prominent fake card site called ID Chief brazenly advertises its services online, knowing how difficult it is for authorities to trace and disrupt their activities despite pressure from American politicians calling for them to take action.
However, improved technology works both ways, as issuing authorities and ID card printing companies like www.thecardnetwork.co.uk have made their cards more sophisticated too, with unique identifying data and holograms that are more difficult to fake. The cat-and-mouse cycle continues as the criminals and legitimate card issuers try to outpace each other technologically, much like any form of sophisticated crime.
Find more information and products here in order to understand how ID printers are using new technology to protect their customers from fraud while still providing excellent value for money.