Before anything else, please keep this in mind: The only way you can obtain a legitimate passport from a foreign country is from that country's government. On-line brokers who promise passports on the cheap are not to be trusted.
If you need to get out of the country, borrow the passport of a friend who looks like you and is not being tracked by the police. Just like fake ID for beer, try to get matching credit cards and other ID. Another possibility if your passport is a sure bust at the border is to enter through Canada or Mexico and take a nice hike across a wilderness border area. Once across your American papers will not be heavily scrutinized unless you start annoying the pigs.
Another concept is the "Camouflage Passport", which is promoted to US citizens traveling overseas. Technically, it's a make-believe passport with the name of a country that either no longer exists (ie: South Vietnam), changed its name with the old name on the passport (ie: Rhodesia, now Zimbabwe), or has a name similar to that of a real country (ie: British West Indies), complete with your photo, vital statistics and lots of phony Visa stamps. You're supposed to show them to potential kidnappers or terrorists to "prove" you're not from the USA ("No, no! I'm not American! I'm really from West Timor!").
In the USA, these are legal to own as long as it's really your name and photo in it, you to don't try to pass them off as real to a government or law enforcement agent and you don't try to get a Visa with it. Elsewhere, you might have some explaining to do if the Customs agents find this in your suitcase. Some companies will also sell "back-up" ID such as a Driver's License and a library card to further "prove" your nationality. Some new-country projects also sell their own passports that look very legit.
The US Customs Service is wise to these since they keep a list of the passports that they recognize. In short, if it isn't on their list, tough luck. However, they might bluff out a local cop in a small town ( "What's a feller from
British Honduras doin' round these here parts?"). Do a web search on "Camouflage Passport" for dealers. Just remember that they're made on a custom basis, so they're not cheap, and since the September 11th attacks, much harder to get.
Official looking "secondary" ID cards can be found in some stores and shopping centers/flea markets that cater to immigrants, both legal and illegal. The cards are often decorated with American flags, quasi-official looking seals and clip-art of bald eagles or the Statue of Liberty and made to look very "government issue". However, they're known as "ancillary" documents that are supposed to be used as back-up ID with your official ID card, and not intended to be official ID on their own. You're required to supply legal ID (driver's license, passport, birth certificate, Resident Alien card, etc.) and sign a legal release (also called a Notary Statement) verifying the information you're giving is legit.
Some check cashing services will offer a "check cashing card" with your photo, address and Social Security Number for a few bucks. If you get one, guard it with your life, since your SSN can be used in Identity Theft.
NSK ("Neue Slowenische Kunst" or "New Slovenian Art"), a Slovenian artists collective that includes the Industrial band Laibach, have formed a "global state" called NSK State. They sell NSK passports that look very official, and for €50 (about $70 USA), one can be yours. Just how you use this "symbolic document" is up to you. According to reports, some people used them to leave occupied Sarajevo during the 1995 civil war when authorities refused to recognize Bosnian passports. Their website is: http://wtc.laibach.org/ , or you can write to:
NSK Information Centre, P.O. Box 101, 1001 Ljubljana, Slovenia
UPDATE: Due to confusion over the legitimacy of these passports (especially in African countries), the Laibach/NSK website no longer lists them for sale and their issuance may be curtailed. A full report is here: http://www.gla.ac.uk/~dc4w/laibach/nskpassport2008.html
A small group called the World Service Authority issues "World Passports" that may or may not be recognized by a number of countries. They officially aren't recognized by the USA, but they've been successfully used in over 150 nations on a case-by-case basis (As they say in the car commercials, "Your mileage may vary."). They also offer "World Citizen" ID cards, birth & marriage certificates, and the like. Check their website at http://www.worldgovernment.org/ or write to them at:
World Service Authority, World Office, 1012 14th Street NW, Suite 205, Washington, DC 20005, USA
A serious attempt of starting a nation over the internet is "Wirtland". The group issues ID cards to its "Witizens" (if you're willing to wait 3-5 months after your Residence Permit is issued). For full information, visit their website at http://www.wirtland.com .
One group called the High Vibrations Academy ("A Space For Growing In Higher Consciousness") offers a "Common Law ID Card". You can read about it here: http://www.highvibrations.org/IDCenter/ , or write to:
High Vibrations Academy, 3311 Mission Street, San Francisco, California.  (Yes, that's how they list their address on their website.)
The Republic of Timucua is a Native American group attempting to resurrect their tribe. They are offering free citizenship in their tribe and a very official looking ID card for their tribe for only $20 U.S. You might want to check them out. You could perhaps at least claim that you're a minority who could get special privileges when it comes time to work in a CorpGov job. Their website is at http://republicoftimucua.synthasite.com/ and their mailing address (listed on their Citizenship Application form) is as follows:
Native American Tribal Republic of Timucua, Tribal Government Complex, 4573 Palmer Ave., Jacksonville, FL 32210
Back in 1977, British bookseller Richard Booth proclaimed the little medieval market town of Hay-on-Wye (on the England-Wales border) to be an "independent kingdom". While this was mostly a publicity stunt for the many bookstores there, he does sell "Kingdom of Hay-on-Wye" passports for the tourist trade as well as honorary knighthoods and titles of nobility through "The Original Hay Peerage for Aspiring Lords and Ladies". Check the website at http://www.richardbooth.demon.co.uk/haypeerage/otheritems.htm or write to:
The Castle Scribe, Hay Castle, Hay-on-Wye, Hereford, HR3 5DG, UK
Another micronation is the self-proclaimed Principality of Sealand (located on Fort Rough Tower, a former WW2 gunnery platform in the English channel) which sells photo ID cards and "Deeds of Individual Noble Title Ownership" so you can call yourself Lord, Lady, Baron or Baroness. No other nation officially recognizes Sealand and their Noble Titles might not get you listed in Burke's Peerage and Gentry, but still the Noble Title certificate might look cool on your wall. Check out the website at http://www.sealandgov.org/shop.html. If you want to send the folks at Sealand a letter (via their post office box in England), write to:
Bureau of Internal Affairs, Principality of Sealand, SEALAND 1001, c/o Sealand Post Bag, IP11 9SZ, UK
Stuart Hill owns the little (2.5 acres) Scottish island of Forewick Holm in the Shetland Islands chain, claiming it to be British and not Scottish based on his own research. He is selling citizenships to his self-proclaimed "Crown Dependency of Forvik Island", and may be issuing identity documents in the future. You can visit his website at http://www.forvik.com/, or drop him a line:
Stuart Hill, Steward's Residence, The Crown Dependency of Forvik Island, Forvik, Shetland, ZE2 9PL, UK
The Embassy of Heaven Church is an odd Christian Fundamentalist group that professes to be (quoting their website directly) "Christ's ambassadors and Citizens of Heaven, called out of the world to preach Heaven's message." They provide driver licenses, registrations, passports, business licenses, birth certificates and other documentation, but they don't have a very successful track record in being recognized by "worldly authorities". Their website lists a number of their members who have been arrested for driving with "Heaven" license plates and using "Heaven" driver licenses, so you might want to take this as a warning. In 1997, their property in Oregon was seized by the Sheriff's Department for non-payment of property taxes, despite their claim that it was a "separate nation" and tax exempt. Still, if this is your trip, you might find it worthwhile. Check out their website at http://www.embassyofheaven.com/ or drop them a line:
Embassy of Heaven Church, P.O. Box 337, Stayton, OR 97383-0337
If you've got the money, or are starting your own country, professional film & TV prop-maker Anthony "Indy" Margole can make a custom passport for you. Just what you do with it is your own responsibility, and they aren't cheap. Visit his site at: http://www.indyprops.com
My IDs Were Lost/Stolen/Destroyed!!!
As we mention elsewhere in the project, sometimes losing your IDs can be more of a pain in the ass than losing cash. Fear not, though. It is going to take legwork but even those on the run and destitute can get more IDs.
Birth Certificate. You are going to have to contact the Vital Records department of the state and county where you were born. It is easiest if you go in person, but if you have since moved far from the place of your birth, they are going to have to mail this to you. The information needed varies according to each county or parishes system. There are two forms of birth certificate in most states: the long form and the short form. The short form is cheaper and does pass for getting most replacement IDs and employment I-9 compliance, but some folks will want to see the long form which has more information.
Social Security card. An additional Social Security Card can be given up to 10 times in a lifetime for no charge. Of course, this is easy to get another copy of if you already have a valid picture ID, know your Social Security Number, and know your parent's maiden and full names. If you do not have a picture ID, you can claim a disaster or emergency. The office can take employee IDs, medical records, bills, and other things. The office is then going to give you a notarized print out that will satisfy anyone that wants to see a social security card like a potential employer and will mail the new card to you depending to an address you give them.
Driver's License or State ID. With Social Security card print out in hand along with payroll stubs, bills in your name, and anything else you can dig up, you can now go to the DMV This is going to cost about 15 USD to 30 USD depending on where in the Empire you get it. If you have already taken the required exams and have no suspensions against your license, you should be able to get one without much trouble as long as all the documents are in order. If not, all is not lost. Because picture IDs are so commonly used to change checks into cash and to conduct any serious business, all states issue State ID cards with "NOT A VALID DRIVER LICENSE" or "IDENTIFICATION CARD" printed conspicuously on the front.
A word about warrants, attachments, and lost picture IDs
Questions have been raised by many anonymous folks with warrants and owing fines on the internet about losing picture IDs and if the cops stationed at the DMV are automatically going to come up and handcuff them if they show up. Of course, from our searches on the internet, no one is answering. However, we do have some of the answers. If the attachment is for merely traffic like a DUI or civil fine, of course they may not give you a DL but make you get a regular State ID. If your fine is from a misdemeanor or violation of a misdemeanor probation, this depends on the state. Some state DMVs are only hooked up to traffic and Child Support Enforcement databases. Others do have links to State misdemeanors or county/city misdemeanors. So, it really depends where your misdemeanor is and if that place wants the extra hassle and expense of caging your ass then carting you off to wherever. So, if the attachment is for a misdemeanor, you should be okay as long as you get the ID in a further away county or parish. Preferably, you can also get this in another state. Most states are not going to mess with other state's misdemeanor warrants and leave you be and let you get your IDs. However, you may eventually want to take care of it since it can show up on some background checks and screw you out of some employment if you ever get straight. Of course, if you get stopped in that state, they may take your car and your person! If you have a felony and they are looking for you, you are at your own risk. Know that whenever you apply for an ID, you are giving them information they can use to come look for you onto a database. Most felonies, the Empire tracks down ruthlessly.
Fake ID Cards
If you're buying Fake ID through the mails or the Internet, you're on your own. The industry is loaded with shady dealers that will rip you off with either no delivery or a very fake looking fake (such as a misspelled state name, legal disclaimers written across the top in small print, or excessively thick laminate). While these may work for getting beer at your local quickie-mart, they more than likely will not get you onto a plane. Furthermore, good luck trying to get your money back, since admitting you were trying to get a counterfeit identification document will get you into serious trouble. Also, by United States Federal Law (17 USC 1738), any privately issued ID card that you obtain through the mails that has your date of birth on it has to say "NOT A GOVERNMENT DOCUMENT" on both sides in at least 12 point type. Even if you do find someone who will make you one without ripping you off, expect
A laminate machine like the ones found in CorpGov human resource departments can make very convincing fake IDs. These things are also entirely legal to own and available at any office supply store!
A laminate machine like the ones found in CorpGov human resource departments can make very convincing fake IDs. These things are also entirely legal to to pay 100 USD to 200 USD because of the expensive equipment, skill, and risk involved needed to make a believable one. own and available at any office supply store!
It is possible, with some effort and experimentation to make your own if you have access to the proper equipment and have okay editing skills. Let's go over some of the finer points.
A breakdown of the PDF417 barcode found on the back of many state issued IDs. Note that you still need some kind of reader and an actual ID because different states store the information in different orders.
A breakdown of the PDF417 barcode found on the back of many state issued IDs. Note that you still need some kind of reader and an actual ID because different states store the information in different orders.
Older appearance. If the person in the photo does not look like the person presenting the ID or the picture looks like a 14 year old and reads age 22, this is not going to work. Fake IDs are limited to those who appear older than they really are.
Computer. Most modern computers will do, even an eight year old trash computer running Puppy Linux in a pinch (though it will be painfully slow). The main thing is it needs to be able to run some kind of photo and art manipulating program.
Software and files. Adobe Photoshop, Macromedia Fireworks, or GIMP (preferably GIMP shop) is needed. Adobe products tend to cost hundreds if purchased. However, pirated copies with cracks appear from time to time on P2P networks like the Pirate Bay with the risk of viruses. GIMP shop is open source and free. GIMP is available for Window$ and Linux. If you are in college, signing up for a class in web design can many times get you free editing software as well. You are also going to need an ID template. You can find these at your friendly Pirate Bay and other sites. Most IDs use the Micro$oft Arial font for text. If you have an operating system that does not have this, you will have to install it or make do with a font that is somewhat close.
Printer. A pigmented based inkjet printer like an Epson printer with DuraBrite ink gives the more believable product. Most dye-based ink jet printers will work fine, too, but not as great as a pigment based ink jet. A laser printer still works, but many times the ink looks a bit off and may not look very passable. Be sure to print on highest quality photo settings. Be sure to print on one sheet of paper - both front and back.
Paper. Cheap typing paper is going to bleed through and not work. Get Artisyn paper or Artisyn Nano Extreme.
Passport photo or digital photo. No, a shitty webcam just will not do. You are going to need a really good quality photo of the person. Paying for a passport photo works as well as using a good quality digital camera. If you are using a real photo, you are also going to need a decent scanner. If you take the photo from a digital camera, you can just transfer the picture to the computer through a memory card. Be sure to look at what color background the DMV uses in ID photos. You may have to fiddle around for a bit with your software to get the background color to match. Either that, or if you are fixing to take the picture yourself, go to a place that sells cheap fabric of the same color and hang that in the background.
Magnetic Stripe. Almost all IDs have this nowadays. Of course, you can forgo this step at the expense of having an ID that will only pass if you flash it really quick without taking it out of a wallet. But, if you already have gotten most of the stuff thus far we know you want more utility. The strip on the back are one of two kinds: either HiCo or LoCo. These can be hard to find, but a search for employee ID products will help you out. If you want to risk adding the ability for the ID to pass a scan (NOT POLICE) to get past things like stores that scan IDs for drinking age, you need a bar stripe encoder and reader. This gets really expensive. The magnetic stripe has all the info on the front of the ID in a certain format that differs state to state. Read a real ID through the scanner to see what format the information is in, then encode the fake information into the stripe that you will be putting with the fake.
Barcode on back. The wierd barcode on the back is information recorded in a format called PDF417. These converters can be found with a bit of an online search. The information contains varies and you may want to http://wiki.stealthiswiki.org/wiki/Identification-Papers 5/8 do a bit of research as to the set up for the state ID you are trying to emulate.
Laminate Machine. Avery, Arcadia EasyIDea, or GBC makes custom laminators for places like corporations to make employee IDs. While one of these produces really professional results, the machines can cost a bit. Covering the printed paper and laminate with a cloth and running an iron over it can work, too.
Good scissors or X-Acto blade. Employee nametag products like EasyIDea Microperforated Artisyn or a butterfly pouch make this pretty easy. But the cheaper stuff take a bit of fiddling. After sealing the plastic, you are going to need a real ID as a template to cut the edges to conform to the shape of an ID.
Hologram. If you want to make something truly convincing, you are either going to need to use a commonly available generic hologram or Perl-X paint. Some of these products come with adhesive film tape you can apply. The state holograms can be a bit tricky, and requires a bit of artistry and practice to get right. After all, there is an art and research side to everything.
Once you get something like this, be sure to be responsible. Remember, just because you can now go to a store and get shitfaced drunk off of a case of beer does not mean that is a good idea. However, if you are a minor who is forced out on the street due to abuse, a fake ID is a ticket to work if you look and act the part. Be aware, unless you combine the bar stripe info with fake info attached to a real social security card which has never been fingerprinted - local three letter agencies will nail you to a wall. Any check that sends the information encoded on the magnetic stripe to a database, most fake IDs will not pass. Blacklights and highly trained personel can usually spot even the best fakes with close examination and tools. Use this only to get a beer or get a job in rough circumstances while underage. It will not work for plane tickets, bank accounts, hooking up utilities, DMV checks, and getting a passport.... and you definitely do not want a cop to find it with your real ID if he body searches you.
One caution against selling fake IDs. If you think it is a good idea to make thousands equipping the entire tenth grade class of a high school with your newly found talent, think again. The more IDs you put out, the more chance some dumbass who does not take seriously proper use of a valuable tool or give two shits about Security Culture is going to get busted with this thing. Even if the dumbass does not narc you out, almost all modern printers capable of making good IDs print out a microscopic pattern on the paper identifying the model and serial number of the printer and who knows what else, depending on the printer. One phone call to the manufacturer, and authorities then have where it was bought. If a warranty was registered or drivers were installed using the internet, it is highly possible to find who did it. Just FYI.
If you are just looking to get work, there is another way. You are still going to need to look and act the age. Take your IDs and make a shitty photocopy of them. Then, slightly wet the last birthday year number on the copy. Take an eraser and gently scrape off the top of the paper where that number is. Then, do careful pen work to write in the new birthday year. Photocopy this sheet of paper again. Put the final copy with your resume and paper application. This method will not work with some large places with strict HR departments. But, since most places usually take and photocopy IDs anyways, you can just give them this. Tell the interviewer that "I knew you were going to need to make copies of my IDs, so I went ahead and made some for you". This has the added benefit of making you appear to be insightful and prepared to an interviewer. If they ask to see the actual documents, you can always claim you do not have them on you.
Using a Corporation as an Identity
Here's another idea that one could use for an identity that some books such as J.J. Luna's "How to be Invisible" outline. The basics of the idea are this. The CorpGov recognizes corporations as "artificial persons" which can own property and draw income. They even issue identification numbers for such "artificial persons" in the form of a Taxpayer Identification Number which the Infernal Revenue Service issues. This is a nine digit number similar to the SSN but instead of the SSN 123-45-6789 pattern that most individuals are familiar with, the TIN format is 12-
3456789 or 12-34-56789. This number could very easily be manipulated to the SSN form if needed for a private reason and for purposes of dealing with the CorpGov could be used the same as format it was issued in.
One may be wondering, "Well what about a Driver's License and all if I go this route?" Well to make it appear to be a person you name the corporation something like Billy Bob Thorton, Inc. and simply drop the Inc. part when dealing on paper with entities such as the DMV and go to some far off state like Idaho or something like that which only require a birth certificate to get an ID card and don't worry with SSN's. There are about 8 to 10 states like this that issue either both ID's and Driver's License without verifying an SSN or at the least issue an ID without verifying an SSN and the only thing needed is a Birth Certificate.
One may be wondering, "Well what in the world do I do to get a Birth Certificate?" Very simple apply for what's called a Delayed Birth Certificate or forge one. Barry Reid's "Paper Trip 3" describes in detail how to get a delayed birth certificate and who are the easiest states to get one through. The simple answer to who is the easiest to get this through is to go to a rather socially liberal state and get one of these issued as they usually ask less questions about why you might not have been born in a hospital and have gotten a birth certificate a long time ago.
Well once you have this Delayed Birth Certificate in whatever name you want it is much easier to obtain all of the other identity info needed. Also use the TIN as your SSN and it is recommended to have your own business to work at or work as a contract labor person for someone rather than a direct employee. Granted if you're going along with the system you'll have to pay capital gains tax and maybe some other taxes for corporations but you'll be able to have a durable identity in whatever name you want and the pittance costs of taxes might certainly be worth that. Also it is recommended that when you set up your corporation, name a phantom person it's Registered Agent or have someone you can totally and completely trust named as the Registered Agent for it. Well good luck and all with this method.
Real ID, Fake Person
The best and safest I.D. is the real thing, printed in a government office or bank. Here is how you can become a new person who can apply for her rightful identification papers.
1- Visit a cemetery or view obituaries finding a baby or child who was born near your birth year and died before 15 (important). Then, check the Social Security Death Index online to see if they are listed. If they are listed, then their death was reported to the social security administration and all attempts to get a number/card will fail.
2- Order a Birth certificate from the state the infant was born (it is better that this be distant from your home).
3- Rent an apartment in this name as a secondary room mate and begin receiving and paying a few bills in this name.
4- With mail and birth certificate you can safely try to get a social security card, claim you have lived with friends, on drugs since your early teens, or been homeless never working legit.
5- Take your stack of ID and get a drivers license.
6- Most important with all of this ID get a new passport.
7- Open a bank account, this could be useful later to have a safe debit card to use overseas.
You should do this several times, months apart and stash your ID in caches in several cities in case you ever need to flee the country quickly. This system might work (someone let us know) in Canada with modifications.
If leaving the US is a concern a few ounces gold or many silver coins can be converted on the gray/black market in almost every country. They are also not subject to inflation. Forget diamonds or jewels; they are too variable and most legit buyers will not give you anything near their real value.
If you're going to drive a car outside the USA, and you have a USA driver's license, it's best to get an International Driving Permit (IDP) in case you get pulled over by a cop who doesn't speak or read English. But be warned! There is no such thing as an "International Driver's License (IDL)" or "International Driving Document (IDD)". There is only an International Driving Permit, and it's nothing more than a multi-language translation of your own existing driver's license. No matter what anyone tells you otherwise, it isn't a license to drive on its own, and you can't get an IDP unless you already have a real driver's license. In the USA, only the American Automobile Association (AAA) or American Automobile Touring Alliance (AATA) through the National Automobile Club (NAC, a motor service club for businesses) can issue them. To get one, go to or call your local AAA or AATA/NAC office or visit their websites for more information (aaa.com, thenac.com). You don't have to be a member to get one, but membership can get you a discount. Avoid the websites or any dealers offering IDLs or IDDs (since they're useless rip-offs), or charging as much as $300 for an IDP. The AAA and NAC sell them for less than $20 plus tax and they're good for one year. You will have to provide two passport-sized photos of yourself (on film, no digitals), but call to see if they can take the photos for you at the office. If not, photos can be had at most local copy shops.
(Outside the USA, contact your country's agency in charge of auto registration and ask who issues International Driving Permits.)
Most USA auto insurance policies don't cover driving into Mexico. Before you go, call your insurance agency to check on your policy. If your coverage isn't valid in Mexico, ask if they offer a short-term policy for your trip, or can recommend an agency that can.
If you're driving your car into Canada, get an Inter-Provincial Insurance Card from your auto insurance agency before you go. It proves your coverage is good in Canada, and can save you lots of problems if your car is stopped by the Mounties.
Neutering your passport does not invalidate it. More correctly, a "faulty" RFID chip does not make your passport invalid -- but intentional damage will invalidate it (in addition to potentially landing you in jail.) Moral of the story? Make sure that there's no evidence that you intentionally destroyed the RFID chip.
A neutered RFID passport will cause additional scrutiny at checkpoints and borders, a better idea might be to foil wrap your passport except when scanning in the airport so it is unreadable by passers on the street. There are currently attempts to hack and rewrite passport chips; this is an option on early passports whth standard RFID although if hacks become common expect added security for later models.