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Fake IDs a security worry: US

Four US senators sent a joint letter to the Chinese Ambassador to the US to urge the Chinese government to investigate companies producing high-quality fake US driver's licenses, calling it "a serious national security threat."

The senators worry that the counterfeit identification documents could be used by terrorists to circumvent the US security infrastructure, according to the letter posted Tuesday on the website of Mark Kirk, one of the four senators.

The letter also said that in 2011, US Customs and Border Protection at O'Hare airport in Chicago seized over 1,700 counterfeit driver's licenses.

An alleged China-based website surreptitiously mailed the fake ID cards to customers, reported the USA Today.

The report also said that the sophistication of the forgeries troubled the US authorities most.

An official from China's Ministry of Commerce, who required anonymity, told the Global Times that they haven't detected any factories or companies producing fake ID cards and exporting them to other countries.

Liu Junhai, an arbitrator from the China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission, said that producing and selling counterfeit identity documents for people in other countries is a criminal act.

"I hope they did a thorough investigation on this and give concrete evidence," Liu added.

The senators singled out the English website, saying it was "China-based website."

A posting on the website, which offers fake driver's licenses and ID cards complete with holograms, states that it uses barcode technology supplied by Chinese company PartiTek.

Liu Ningzhong, a technician with PartiTek, told the Global Times that some unidentified Web users downloaded the trial version of his company's barcode software last year, but they didn't know it was used to make fake ID cards until a foreign reporter contacted them last year.

PartiTek is a joint software development company operated by two Nanjing-based science and technology universities.

Liu said he has not received any request for information from either the Chinese or US government.

"The US senators and media should provide stronger evidence and crack down on their websites that sell the so-called 'novelty IDs,'" Liu said.


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