4 Reasons a Strong Visitor Management System is Critical for Correctional Facilities

Progressive prisons across the globe are using ID scanning to streamline their visitor management. In the United States, there are over 2,220,300 incarcerated adults, so having the ability to easily track who is coming in and out of the facility to visit these prisoners is absolutely essential to securing the grounds, reducing risks and increasing operational efficiencies.

Here are four reasons a robust visitor management system centered on quality ID scanning is critical for prisons:

  1. For many prisons, the visit process occurs before the visitor even sets foot on prison grounds. With ID scanning applications like VeriScan Online, facility personnel can create and send a visit request to the security director with an electronic request form. This form includes such information as the start of the visit, host’s name, visitor’s name and other pertinent informaiton. Once the request is submitted, the security director will ultimately decide whether or not that individual is approved for the visitor queue. The scheduled visits can then be viewed by the appropriate security personnel. On the day of the visit, prison security personnel scan the visitor’s ID. In less than 1 second, the necessary information is collected and a visitor badge highlighting the person’s name and picture, alongside how long the visitor is allowed on the premises can be produced.
  2. Some facilities use biometrics as part of their visitor management processes. Once a person scans their ID and gives their fingerprint, the next time their fingerprint is scanned, their ID data and other relevant information, such as their image will pop up on the screen. This is a great feature for prisons that are trying to ensure a high level of security as well as expedite the check-in process even further.
  3. A higher level of identity validation can be necessary. If an andividual or their ID were to seem suspicious or security personnel wanted to gain more information on the visitor, they could run background checks on the individual by scanning their ID for further background information. The results from these checks appear in a matter of a few seconds. In addition, some facilities have existing lists of “banned” visitors. These lists can be imported into certain ID scanning software (such as IDScan.net’s VeriScan Online) so if their ID is scanned, it will pop up that they are banned. This added layer of security helps keeps prison staff and prisoners safe.
  4. Visitor management systems offer benefits beyond security. Many prison facilities like to have first-time visitors sign an electronic waiver or an agreement to adhere to the facility’s rules. Once the waiver is signed, it will automatically be saved, stored and linked to that individuals ID scan. If a visitor was to break prison rules or claimed that they were unaware of said rules, IDScan.net’s software allows prison personnel to easily access visitor records. In this case, it would show a signed copy of the rules that the visitor signed. This waiver component will help visitors comply with prison regulations.

IDScan.net can help you reduce prison visitor’s wait time and optimize the check-in process. Learn more about IDScan.net’s visitor management solutions, here or call our VeriScan Online account specialist, Alycia at 888-430-8936 x 103!

 

 

Nightclub and Bar Owners: What Can You Do with Demographics?

If you are a nightclub or bar owner, scanning an ID should go way beyond verifying a patron’s age. If you are not using the valuable demographic data that is collected upon ID scan, then you are hurting your bottom line.

In this post, you will learn how you can take advantage of the valuable demographic statistics.

Demographic Data That Will Help You:

  • Zip codes
  • Age
  • Gender

 

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Zip codes are important. If you run a report using a tool like VeriScan Online, and you see that a certain zip code in your city or town has minimal presence at your bar, you know you might want to increase your advertising in that area.

You will also want to segment your customers by age and gender. Don’t get me wrong, of course, there will be exceptions to some of the stereotypical  beverage and or music preferences, however having an overall idea of age and gender will help your operations and your bottom line.

If on Tuesdays you primarily have 40-45 year old males at your bar, you would probably consider a scotch or whiskey special. Whereas, if on Fridays you have a large number of 22-25 year old females, you might consider doing a skinny margarita special. This is not to say that millenials don’t like whiskey and 45 year old men don’t like skinny margaritas, but you understand the overall goal here.


By observing statistics about your audience, you can make small adjustments in your operations that will bring great returns.

If you don’t have a way to collect this demographic information,  Click here.

If you want to learn more about demographics and strategy at your nightclub or bar, checkout this article  from Nightclub&Bar.

LA Governor John Bel Edwards Prepares for Real ID Bill

On Monday, May 30th the Louisiana Senate voted to pass a bill that allows residents to decide whether they want a driver’s license or other state ID card that is compliant with the Real ID Act.

The bill was proposed by Louisiana State Senator Yvonne Dorsey-Colomb (pictured below) and passed with a 28-9 vote. Governor John Bel Edwards plans to sign the bill into law.

Proponents of the bill believe that Louisiana residents should have this option in order to protect their privacy.

As discussed in our last blog post, opponents of the Real ID Act feel that it violates privacy and makes it easier for hackers to obtain personal information due to the fact that the information will go into a database that is shared between states.

To learn more about this bill click here.


Real ID bill

Image from the Washington Times

Need a refresher on the Real ID Act? Click here.

Illinois Transitions to Real ID Compliance

Illinois will change the way they issue IDs as part of its efforts to become compliant with the Real ID Act.

According to the Department of Homeland Security, Illinois, along with Minnesota, Missouri, and Washington are not compliant with the Real ID Act.

Illinois will begin the process to become compliant this summer. Tuesday, May 24th, Jesse White, Illinois Secretary of State, announced the steps Illinois will take to achieve compliance. Beginning in July, new licenses and other state ID cards will be mailed to the applicant after they pass a number of fraud checks. In the meantime, the applicant will receive a temporary paper to serve as their identification.

DHS has created the following deadlines:

  • All U.S. Residents flying domestically will be able to use a driver’s license orother form of identification accepted by TSA until January 2018.
  • Beginning January 22nd, 2018, residents must present an alternative form ofidentification unless they are a resident of one of the states which has been granted an extension.
  • Beginning October 1st, 2020, all U.S. residents are required to have a Real IDcompliant license or another form of TSA-approved identification for domestic airtravel.

Jim Harper quote

We have discussed the Real ID Act in previous blog posts, but we have not covered the reasoning for states such as Illinois’ hesitance in becoming compliant. According to the Examiner, several states have not wanted to transition to Real ID compliance because they feel it minimizes states’ rights as well as individual privacy.

Federal funding for Real ID compliance is only issued to states that agree to link their databases to other states so information between DMVs can be shared.

As discussed in Cynthia Hodges’ article on the Examiner, Jim Harper, Director of Information Policy Studies at the Free-Market CATO Insitute and a member of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Data Privacy and Data Committee, states, “The Real ID Act represents a transfer of power from individuals to institutions, and that transfer threatens liberty, enables identity fraud, and subjects people to unwanted surveillance.”

While there is controversy surrounding the act, the majority of states are compliant or are in the process of becoming so. We will continue to keep readers updated on the act.

To check the status of your state’s compliance on the Real ID Act, click here.

Collision Conference

This past week two of our team members (myself included) had the pleasure of attending Collision. For those of you who may not be familiar with Collision, it is a US tech conference where startups and industry leaders gather to learn and network.

My primary purpose for being there was to soak up as much knowledge as I could in the one day I was able to attend. There were hundreds of lecturers at different stages who spoke in 15 minute increments. There were several stages set up which categorized the different types of lectures; I spent most of my time at the Marketing Stage however made a point to venture out to learn about other topics such as sustainable growth.

Almost every speaker I saw reignited my desire to improve and ramp up marketing efforts and gain more knowledge about the tech industry in general. There were some major industry players there such as Neil Vogel of About.com, Phil Gilbert of IBMDesign and Julia Hartz of Eventbrite. I enjoyed the 15 minute lectures because the short time frame  encouraged speakers to hit the most important points of their experiences and encouraged attendees to soak up as much information as they could.

Here are the topics which were covered by the aforementioned people:

  • Reinventing your brand and beating the competion (Neil Vogel)
  • Sustainable business: is growth the right metric? (Julia Hartz)
  • Using the creative mind to problem-solve (Phil Gilbert)

Collision

I was blown away by how candid Neil Vogel was. He spoke about the struggles About.com has had, and how they had not kept up with their competion in terms of branding and strategizing their content. He also discussed their plan for their new health website, verywell.com which was launched that day, pretty genius if you ask me.

Julia Hartz had a conversation with Tina Sharkey of Sherpa Foundry about sustainable growth, how do you truly measure it, and how do you achieve it in different markets? Hearing the history of EventBrite was very motivating and made me start thinking as to how this might be applied to my own job.

Phil Gilbert, stood at a high table while sipping on Abita Amber chatting with Harry West of frog and Chris Dannen of Fast Company. They discussed the importance of communication within a company and how before you can truly be valuable to a customer, you have to make sure your own team is on the same page. This really hit home in terms of the importance of communication within an organization, be it a tiny one or a large one.

 

Below are some of the major takeaways from each lecture:

1.  Companies that are not customer centric, fail.

 

2. It is important to take a step back from your company and examine

everything from an outside perspective.

 

3. You must have empathy within your own company, a sort of humble confidence.


All in all, Collision was a great experience. There were many incredible speakers which were not all covered in this post, but we wanted to share with our readers some of the valuable highlights. We plan to attend next year and fingers crossed it will be in our awesome hometown of New Orleans!

 

Fraud: Here’s What You Need to Know

5 facts fraud

1The U.S. holds 40% of the world's fraud.
288.3% of identity fraud is committed using false identification.
3Identity fraud with a fake ID accounts for 73.8% of the total dollars lost by U.S. businesses.
4According to the FTC, synthetic identity theft accounts for nearly 85% of the more than 16 million ID thefts in the U.S. each year.
1 40%55% of data breaches are from outsiders.

Click here to learn more about fraud.

To see how our ID scanning solutions can help you prevent fraud, please click here.

revention

Revention Partners with IDScan.net

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March 15, 2016-Revention, a leader in providing custom point of sale solutions to the hospitality industry, has partnered with IDScan.net to provide a robust and secure age verification solution.

This solution provides added security measures and empowers businesses to serve alcohol to legal aged patrons, eliminating much of the costly fines, lawsuits, and danger associated with serving to minors. Using the VeriScan Online scanning solution allows a business to verify age more quickly and accurately than ever, all with the swipe of a driver’s license through a Revention terminal. The program works with any state ID (driver’s license, military, ID, etc.) or magnetic stripe/2D barcode card.

The data is captured and stored in the database for future reference, allowing businesses to keep track of every guest. Their information is stored in a file to see how many times they have visited the business along with the dates and times of othose visits. Furthermore, the program allows you to flag banned or VIP guests, which will alert staff members.

“Revention will continue to partner with solutions such as IDScan.net to ensure that our customers receive the most up-to-date technology to keep their businesses secure,” stated Revention Director of Product Management, Laura Gaudin.

About Revention, Inc. 

Revention is the leading developer of complete, customizable restaurant and entertainment management solutions designed to streamline the way hospitality concepts do business. Revention’s offerings include point of sale solutions, HungerRush integrated online ordering, and Revention Enterprise. Revention provides a complete solution that includes customized installation, training, technical support and much more.

For additional information, go to http://www.revention.com/.

Retailers Incorporate RFID Technology into Brick and Mortar Stores

If retailers across the country have a Super Bowl, it is called the Big Show, which this year took place in January in New York City. The big winnger of the big show, according to industry experts, is the role of Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology. This innovative strategy for improving customer experience, increasing data and reducing loss is growing in popularity and has the potential of returning big dividends for brick and mortar stores, competing with a growing shift to online shopping.

According to Bill Hargrace, founder of the RFID Research Center at the University of Arkansas, RFID is the next big thing for top retailers. Half of the top 100 U.S. retailers are using RFID. RFID refers to the small chip that eliminates manul data entry or barcode scanning. It does not need to be scanned directly. For example, a bag of items at check-out can be priced without separating them. Though the technology has been available for decades, it has only recently become affordable and reliable enough to warrant the investment. Gillette recently bought 500 million devices for its products at the cost of ten cents per tag, according to published reports. In addition ot the obvious security and scanning benefits (the chips can act as a mini alarm), RFID technology has been employed in creative ways by major retailers. RFID chips embedded in clothes allows customers to look into a mirror/screen that shows them how the clothes would look on a modeling catwalk, and other audio-visual content related to the item, according to a trade report.

newbalance-rfid

The increased cost per tag appears to be outweighed by long-term benefits, though according to one study on the return on investment of RFID, the gains can be difficult to track. “(ROI) is not always easy to determine since you may have returns that are not necssarily a matter of financial profit,” the study’s author states. “Some RFID projects nay not yield significant cost reduction nor increase in revenue-at least not right away. However, they may provide significant benefits like increase in customer satisfaction or risk reduction.” Time will tell whether the ROI is worth it, but in the meantime, it will be stimulating to experience this newly incorporated technology first hand.

To learn more about IDScan.net, click here.

 

Some States Receive Additional Implementation Time for the Real ID Act

According to an article on Politico.com, the Department of Homeland Security is extending the deadline for certain states which have not yet incorporated the changes to driver’s licenses as outlined in the Real ID Act.

Need a reminder of the Real ID Act? See below:

  • It was created to “set standards for the issuance of sources of identification, such as driver’s licenses.”
  • Real ID Act was passed in 2005 in response to 9/11
  • Residents must show proof of citizenship or residency in order to obtain driver’s license

Real ID

For more information on the Real ID Act, click on the image above.


While the states (Illinois, Minnesota, Missouri, New Mexico and Washington) that received the two year extension are grateful for it, others are less than thrilled. Some industry law-makers fear that the states will not be motivated enough to take the necessary steps to actually execute the implementation.

What are your thoughts?

Card Durability

In the world of IDs, card durability is an important factor for a number of parties. We, the card holder want our cards to last as a matter of convenience as well as the issuers of the cards where creating new ones costs a pretty penny. What is it then that determines whether a card will make it through a 2, 5 or even 10 year lifespan?

 

There are several different tests which are conducted. The first test is the ISO/IEC 24789. This test is comprised of 2 parts. The first part determines the lifespan of the card by making estimations about how it will be used. One has to consider, what is the life span of the card? The standard ID card life is 5 years. Within that 5 year period, the vendors must determine how it will be stored and used. Storage will vary, some will keep the card in a wallet, others in a pocket. The ID will be exchanged between people to look at it, it may be swiped or scanned. Durability tests are then conducted on the cards to see whether these estimates are accurate.

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The ANSI INCITS 322 is another type of test which is used to see if the card physically endures tough environmental conditions. Some of the test includes putting cards in a paint can which is then filled up with a variety of substances and shaken for several hours. The complement to this test is the  ANSI INCITS 322 Surface Abrasion Test which involves putting the cards on a rotator which are ground by a machine. This is repeated for 5,000 cycles.

 

While the durability tests are important in creating the ideal card, they are not the only factor in creating them. A card’s creation is aldo dependent upon the relationship between the vendor and the issuer. Agreements between the two can take a considerable amount of time. Experts agree that it is important for vendors and issuers to come up with a standard practice to provide feedback regarding the cards’ durability and create standards for testing and issuing.

 

Card durability is also important not just for the convenience of the individuals which have the cards but because producing them is very costly. It is expensive to re-issue 50 million cards every 5 to 7 years. A card with a 10 year life span would be beneficial for muliple parties.

 

For more information on card durability please click on the links below:

For questions related to ID scanning, please   Click here.