Innovative device offers drinkers proof of age at their fingertips
A new device intended to prevent underage drinking is being introduced in the pubs and clubs in Bath with the help of Bath & North East Somerset Council.
Touch2id combines fingerprint recognition technology with the latest 'contactless' stickers to help pubs and clubs quickly identify whether or not people are above the legal age to be served alcohol.
Touch2id, the company that has developed the innovative device, is working with the Post Office Ltd, to help initialise the scheme in selected licensed premises in Bath.
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The scheme involves a person going to the Post Office with their Passport or Driving Licence where they will carry out various checks to verify their identity and age. A unique code is then created from their fingerprint which is encrypted onto a smart sticker for their mobile phone. The smart sticker, together with a fingerprint reader, can then be used by the pub or club to identify the person and ensure that they are the correct age.
Councillor David Dixon (Lib-Dem, Oldfield), Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods, said: "Bath & North East Somerset Council is keen to support this initiative which aims to offer a quick, cost-effective means to identify whether or not someone is underage.
"We've held a presentation evening at the Guildhall with Touch2id and the Post Office to help some of Bath's pubs and clubs to find out more about the pilot scheme and hopefully get involved. It should make it easier for 18-25-year-olds to prove their age and assist licensees in ensuring they comply with the laws on underage drinking."
Touch2id will be available from 9th July 2012 at the main Post Office on Northgate Street in the centre of Bath and will be free to the 18-25s who obtain it during an initial three month promotional period.
Giles Sergant, Touch2id's Managing Director, said: "We successfully ran a UK pilot during 2010/11 in order to prove the technology worked and there was demand for it. Now it's about providing it over a wider area where the product's true convenience can be realised.
"With Touch2id your age is checked once in good lighting conditions and using technology that's designed to validate all the security features in ID documents. It takes about five minutes. Then at point of sale you just prove you've been through the process. This means you don't need to carry and share your personal data with strangers time and again."
Martin Moran, Commercial Director at the Post Office, said: "Touch2id provides real convenience to 18-25 year olds, who are increasingly required to prove their adult status when buying age-related products or services. Its successful introduction would reduce pressure on licensees and others required to determine age.
"One of the great strengths of Touch2id is that it cannot be transferred between friends and siblings. There's no database, and no fingerprints are stored, just a unique code created from the individual's finger at the Post Office."
Further information on the Touch2id scheme can be found at www.touch2id.co.uk
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