Shedding light on fake IDs


Doorstaff in Liverpool city centre clubs and bars are being helped to identify false identification used by clubgoers.

They are being issued with ultra violet lights which are effective in detecting when driving licences, passport and other forms of identification have been altered or are fakes.

This is an initiative by the city council’s Alcohol and Tobacco Unit who have been involved with the licensed trade in tackling this issue. They have received funding from the city centre Joint Agency Group which brings together the police, council and Citysafe, to deal with safety issues.

All door staff who work in the city centre’s night time economy have now been trained on how to spot fake ID.

However, there are occasions when even experienced staff fail to distinguish between genuine and fake IDs.

Councillor Emily Spurrell, Mayoral Lead for Community Safety explained: “We are making every effort to stop underage drinking and doorstaff are in the frontline of preventing the under 18s getting access to alcohol

“We know it can be difficult for even experienced members of staff to tell if some ID is genuine or not.

“It is asking a lot of door staff to be able to tell if an older brother or sister’s passport or driving licence has been “borrowed” to get into a club- especially if the lighting is not particularly good.

“And some forged IDs are so convincing that they cannot be easily distinguished from the real thing- so we want to work with the staff to give them some practical help

“Providing them with the UV lights will help them to do their job more effectively and without argument. They will easily detect the fakes and where any other documents have been altered.

“Some clubs use equipment such as clubscan, – in certain cases this is a condition of their licence – but this is expensive to install and the UV lights are a much more cost-effective method.

“Liverpool city centre is one of the safest in the country and  being able to identify false IDs is another step in keeping it that way.”

Doorstaff are legally entitled to confiscate false IDs.

It is an  offence to:

• Use a genuine document which is being used by someone else,
• Use a genuine document which has been altered,
• Use a genuine document which has been fraudulently obtained,
• Use a false document (i.e. someone has created a completely false document).


Liverpool Waterfront