Willy's Pub in Texas reopened in February, 2020 after implementing a camera and ID scanner system at the point-of-sale as well as the entrance. For the first few weeks of the semester, the pub had remained closed due to certain violations of the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission (TABC) regulations committed during an event in December of the previous year.
These violations were reported at the event titled the “Last Pub of the Decade”, which led to the establishment being closed down by the authorities. An investigation was conducted by the TABC on the 6th of December, which yielded two charges – selling alcohol to a minor and allowing a minor to consume the purchased alcohol on the premises of the pub. If any similar violations occur in the future, it is very likely that Willy's Pub will be closed down and its licensed revoked permanently.
Administrative citations were given by the TABC to Willy's Pub as a result of the violations uncovered. This was the first time that Willy's had received such citations and it is still unclear whether or not any fines will be levied on the establishment by the TABC. If fines are levied, an official announcement is yet to be made about what that fine may be and how much might need to be paid by the pub.
Driver's license readers and ID scanners for bars have gained great popularity over the years. The simple fact the human error factor contributes to many fines and legal trouble for businesses. In a fast paced environment, the employee should first remember to ask for an ID and then carefully examine and calculate the age and expiration status of an ID – all within a few seconds. Also, advances in technology have made fake ID cards easy to create and distribute so minors and teenagers have access to them to buy alcohol, marijuana, cigarettes, and other age-restricted substances.
It’s critical that businesses selling such products have been forced to install high-quality ID scanners in bars, pubs, and marijuana dispensaries in order to minimize the risk of accidentally selling alcohol or other age-restricted substances to a minor or one using a fake ID. The sale of such products to minors could result in heavy penalties and lawsuits, even if done unintentionally or by accident. It is sound business practice to have an ID Checking Policy in place. One that includes an ID Scanner that can verify age and expiration status, provide a layer of security, and document the transaction. Our current climate requires that businesses at a minimum equip their staff with the tools to make better judgement.
ID scanners for bars comprise of a barcode scanner and magnetic reader installed within a small, portable device with an LCD screen. When a driver's license or a state ID is scanned through the ID Scanner, the owner's age, date of birth, and name are displayed clearly on the screen of the scanner. These scanners are also able to identify altered, fake or suspicious ID cards. As a result, using an ID Scanner can protect businesses and their employees from legal exposure and also protect their license.
After the TABC investigation, the staff members and management of Willy's Pub were asked to install upgraded safety procedures that would prevent such an incident from occurring in the future. In order to improve their ID verification process and prevent the usage of fake IDs in the future, the pub has now installed an electronic ID scanner as well as a camera at the entrance.
Another measure that can be implemented to prevent the sale of alcohol to underage persons is to train staff members to compare the photo on the ID card with the face of the person carrying it. This is because many underage persons try to bypass the rules of the pub by using an authentic ID of an adult friend or sibling.
This type of fraud can be prevented using an ID Scanner as this device takes the guesswork and math out of the equation. The employee can spend adequate time to compare the face to the picture of an ID. The process is not hurried, but the user can use the ID Scanner as a tool to make the proper judgement call.
If used properly, ID scanners for bars and pubs can be very useful, both for the establishment selling age-restricted substances as well as for the community as a whole. For the best results, however, high-quality ID scanners, manufactured by a reputed brand or company, should be installed as soon as possible at the entrance and point-of-sale of all such establishments. ID Scanners through APPS and monthly service providers need to be examined carefully to determine if they meet Privacy laws in your state.