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What is counterfeiting ?

Counterfeiting is the complete reproduction of an identity document. Generally speaking, this is simple to detect when you have the physical document, as counterfeits are often of very poor quality and rarely include all the security features present in an authentic document. However, counterfeiters’ technical skill levels are quickly improving, and some well-made counterfeits are beginning to appear.


This type of fraud comes up frequently at the beginning of a new online relationship, with the counterfeiter simply sending an image or photocopy of the document. The absence of the original document both greatly complicates the detection of this type of fraud and facilitates the counterfeiters’ job, as they can use a computer to directly produce the requested image. The forgery then involves scanning a valid document and making changes to the image to alter the personalised information on the document.

Creating a fake might involve :

  • Providing a totally different identity, in which case all the personalised information is changed
  • Stealing an existing identity, in which case the thief’s photo is inserted over that of the document’s original holder
  • Modifying some of the document’s characteristics without changing the identity. This is the case, for example, when counterfeiting a residence permit to extend the expiry date, or counterfeiting an identity document to age the holder (to give the holder the right to drink, go to a club etc.).
Documentary Counterfeiting Fighting

Our service to combat counterfeiting

To require the user to present a physical document, and not simply a document image, during identity verification via mobile, we recommend using the SDK mobile for IDCHECK.IO capture kit, developed by ARIADNEXT. To detect a counterfeit, we concentrate on errors made when the counterfeiter constructs the document. These might be personalisation errors or errors in reproducing the document’s security features.

The IDCheck.io service uses a database containing thousands of examples of identity documents issued by every country. As a result, the personalisation characteristics and relevant security features are known for each document. After the first automatic document identification step, IDCheck.io verifies the personalisation characteristics and security features to detect this type of fraud.

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