Many states, including Maryland, are converting to bar code type drivers' licenses. It is important that any ID reader purchased has the ability to read both bar code and magnetic strip drivers' licenses.
ID readers are effective tools in determining age and other physical and personal information on drivers' licenses that are presented to clerks, bartenders, waiters, etc. They do not replace the importance of examining the picture on the driver's license to ensure that the picture matches the person who is presenting it as identification.
If an ID reader is purchased, it should be used based on policies that are established by each alcoholic beverage licensed facility. Research has indicated that some retailers purchase ID readers but do not instruct employees on how and when to use them. The effectiveness of ID readers are therefore greatly reduced if they are not used in a consistent and effective manner.
ID Reader Vendors*:
*There are several other manufacturers of ID readers available. Retailers are encouraged to purchase ID readers that meet their needs. Please keep in mind that they should read both bar code and magnetic strip drivers' licenses. ID readers should also have the capability to be updated should the technology change on the various states' drivers licenses.