This article is a guide to fake id or phony identification for use by professional gamblers, with fake id laws and fake id options.
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Fake ID for Card Counters

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Fake ID: A Credit Card Under An Assumed Name

By Arnold Snyder
(From Blackjack Forum VIII #4, December 1988)
© Blackjack Forum 1988

In the last issue of Blackjack Forum, a correspondent ("Letters") remarked that as a method of maintaining anonymity in the casinos, one might "... get a credit card under an assumed name. Some cards, such as Visa, permit this as a 'second card' provided the primary card holder assumes responsibility for the second user." Blackjack Forum readers want to know:

How is this done?

Is this form of fake ID safe?

Is this form of false identification legal?

If you already have a credit card, it's done very easily. You receive a solicitation by phone or in the mail from some out-of-state bank, offering you their Visa or Mastercard with a pre-approved line of credit. If you have a decent credit rating, you probably receive these solicitations frequently. If this is a mail solicitation, you can call the bank and say, "Gee, I'd like to thank you for preapproving me for your credit card, but I don't realIy need another credit card right now. I was wondering if you'd send me a credit card in my nephew's (or niece's) name, who lives with me?"

They will answer, "Of course, if you will assume responsibility."

You say, "I would like the card in his (or her) name, but I would like all billing and statements sent to me. I will be 100% responsible for paying the bills. But I don't want my name on the card. I don't want to have to co-sign for purchases. He (or she) is a student, with no credit history, and I would just like to set this up for emergencies."

They will say, "No problem. What is your nephew's (or niece's) name?"

You will soon possess this credit card.

Now, as for the next two questions: is this safe, and, is this legal?

Well, the fact exists that you don't have a nephew, or, if you do, you're not him. The name you've given to the bank is phony. This may constitute fraud. You will find, however, that when you make reservations at a casino, using the card with the phony name, you will have no problem. If they run a check on the card, it's valid. You will be known by your new name, no questions asked. In fact, you could have half a dozen valid credit cards in half a dozen different names -- all, of course, from different banks -- allowing you to be someone different at all of the casinos where you stay.

So long as you pay your bills, you will probably never have a problem with the bank. Even if it were somehow discovered that you had a credit card in an assumed name, it's unlikely you'd ever be prosecuted for fraud, since no one would be able to prove any damages (again, assuming you pay your bills).

Various states have their own laws regarding fake l.D., its use, possession, etc. Most of these laws are designed to recover damages from defrauded parties. My advice, if you're seriously considering this route, is to talk with your lawyer about possible repercussions in your state and/or other states where you may use such methods of protecting your identity for non-fraudulent purposes. There are also a couple of books in print that deal with this subject in depth -- The Paper Trip I and The Paper Trip II.

The Paper Trip I was first published in 1971, then revised in 1984, and updated again in 1987. This book never mentions gambling or blackjack, but it answers many questions of importance to card counters with regards to using fictitious names, false l.D., etc. Much of this book is a "how-to" guide -- i.e., how to obtain a birth certificate in a name other than your own; how to obtain a driver's license, state l.D. card, passport, various and sundry membership cards, credit cards, university degrees, etc.

This book also discusses the issue of legality. It is not only possible, but relatively easy, for anyone to obtain multiple sets of authentic l.D., including driver's licenses and credit cards, in various names. The Paper Trip has long been the classic "underground" reference work on this subject.

The Paper Trip II was first published in 1977, then updated in 1987. This is a companion guide to the above book for the serious paper tripper. Although the original book contains all you need to know to obtain new l.D., this book makes it a lot easier by providing state by state breakdowns of exactly where to write for vital records, the fees, etc.

There is also more information on obtaining social security cards, "counterfeit" I.D., and state by state laws regarding legal name changes. This book also contains various sample forms, a complete printout of the federal laws regarding the possession and use of identification and false identification, discussion of various state l.D. laws (including Nevada), etc. This book is recommended for authentic imposters only.

[Note: There may be a Paper Trip III by the time you read this, as laws regarding identification continue to change, especially since 9/11. The most current version may be found in the catalog of the publisher at] ♠

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  Fake ID for Use by Professional Gamblers
Fake id (or phony identification) is against the law if you are using fake government-issued id, but what are the real legal repercussions of use of such fake id? And what other fake id options are available to gamblers for the purpose of maintaining anonymity in casinos? Check this practical guide to fake id for gamblers.