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ID scan for identifying people banned from licensed premises

ID scanning technology for late-night licensed premises pubs and clubs, linking information about banned people and night-time economy venues.

First published

Key details

Does it work?
Untested – new or innovative
Violence (other)

Paul Golley

Email address
East Midlands
Business and commerce
Community safety partnership
Local authority
Stage of practice
The practice is implemented.
Start date
Completion date
Scale of initiative
Target group
General public


This initiative aims to: 

  • facilitate information-sharing between venues – if an offender is banned from one venue they will be flagged as being barred from all

  • prevent crime and disorder – offenders are less likely to commit crime, knowing their details have just been stored on a database

  • identify suspects quickly – if a crime is identified at the venue, there is an audit trail of who was at the address at that time, which helps police investigations

  • prevent underage access to alcohol

  • protect women and members of the public from harm, as those who have received a ban are preventing from entering the venue again

Intended outcome

  • Reduce crime.

  • Improve customer safety.

  • Support door staff and licensed premises management – a computer-generated ban makes the decision feel more objective.

  • Possible option for police to add as a condition of licensing.

  • Support investigations and increase detection opportunities.

  • Promote partnership working through pub watch. Businesses are competitors for sales but should be working together when it comes to crime reduction and keeping customers safer.

  • Enforce a message to offenders and potential offenders that if you cause violence or commit a crime in a licensed premises with ID scan installed, then you will be barred from county pubs. This avoids deflection.


Northamptonshire Police has completed a county-wide ID scanner project. This involved thirty venues receiving either a wall-mounted or a floor unit ID scanner. Every venue open past 1am with door staff was offered a free unit, fully funded by the Office of the Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner (OPFCC). Also provided was training on how to use it at the point of installation and full support (24/7) for a minimum of two years, allowing door staff to check the ID of each customer.

The scanner has artificial intelligence (AI) capability, meaning it is impossible to fake an ID. The system is fast and easy to use. It produces a tick or cross when the ID is scanned, producing an instant yes or no decision, by way of a green tick or red cross. The information of each ID is stored on a secure database in line with GDPR requirements, with the premises themselves being the data controller.

The purpose of checking ID is beyond age verification. Venues benefitting from this free equipment can check all customers as a condition to enter their licensed premises. By funding thirty units of the same type, venues can share information with each other. This ensures that if an offender is barred from one venue, they will flag up as being barred from all.

Overall impact

The overall impact has not yet been assessed.


  • The plan to connect 30 venues on one system is ambitious. But in the interests of promoting and sharing information of banned persons, it's vital that the same database is used and the venues use the compatible equipment. It therefore makes sense for one company to drive this.

  • The decision to 'gift' this equipment to venues is of particular importance, as the venues are the data controllers of the information they gather. The OPFCC is the funder of the equipment to help promote safety and security, encouraging the venues to improve the safety of their customers.


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Legal Disclaimer

Disclaimer: The views, information or opinions expressed in this shared practice example are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or views of the College of Policing or the organisations involved.

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