P&L Scanners Looking For More than Fake IDs

By DAVID MARTIN

Security officers at the Power & Light District use hand-held scanners to check the authenticity of the IDs they’re presented. In addition to weeding out underage drinkers, the machines also conduct market research.

Power & Light spokesman Jon Stephens says the scanners do not collect personal data. Information is being pulled from the licenses, however. “Zip codes and other basic demographic data is compiled and used internally to determine the effectiveness of the marketing and advertising,” Stephens says in an e-mail.

The practice appears to conform with known privacy laws. Existing statutes do not say much about the kind of information that ID scanners can collect. “Unless there’s minors or misrepresentation, there isn’t a lot of law in this area,” says Paul D. Callister, director of the Leon E. Bloch Law Library at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

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