Many college students see acquiring a fake ID as a rite of passage. In fact, with today’s technology, more fake IDs are being seen than ever before. Rather than relying on your friend’s sketchy older brother, tech-savvy college kids are turning to the dark web to order fake IDs online. But college students in Philadelphia are going to have less fake IDs than expected — U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials say that since May, more than 500 fake IDs have been seized as shipments are intercepted.
With about 218 million people having U.S. driver’s licenses in 2015 alone, the process of making fake IDs has improved over the years. Some fakes not only look like the real thing, they also scan like real IDs. Officials said the quality of the fake ID cards varied from poor to very good, with some of them having scannable barcodes that would pass as real IDs. The counterfeit IDs were from more than 20 countries and states around the world. Authorities say the shipments came from China, Nigeria, Canada, and countries in southwest Asia.
CBP reported that the IDs usually came in packages carrying several cards at once, hidden in boxes with other items like books or silverware. And according to students, prices for the fake IDs can vary greatly, ranging from $60 to $300 for some. But some students say that they don’t always need fake IDs to consume alcohol, especially for on-campus parties.
While it’s not uncommon for there to be items like IDs and money created for purposes like filmmaking, with prop houses producing about 270 types of movie money between 1970 and 2000 alone, it becomes a serious issue when underage people are trying to use fake IDs to buy and consume alcohol.
The majority of the ID cards that were confiscated have been given to state and university police investigators so they are not only aware of the issue, but so they can keep the IDs in mind for future references. Officials say the remaining IDs will be destroyed, along with any more that may come along.
According to said Casey Durst, CBP Director of the Baltimore Field Office, “Counterfeit drivers licenses have historically been used by those under 21 years of age for the illegal consumption of alcohol, but fake IDs have also been used in criminal enterprises, such as identity theft cases and immigration fraud. Customs and Border Protection officers will continue to exercise extraordinary vigilance during trade enforcement operations and we remain committed to the safety and security of our nation every day.”