Filed Under: Tech

Time to ditch your wallet? Digital licenses and state IDs take off

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For the first time, passengers in Arizona can clear the TSA security checkpoints using their digital driver’s license or state ID on their Apple smartphone. On March 23, Phoenix Sky Harbor became the first airport to offer this option instead of physical, plastic ID cards. 

Is a digital license or state ID coming to a city near you? 

More than a dozen states currently utilize a digital or mobile driver’s license, including Arizona, Colorado, Delaware, Georgia, Oklahoma, and Louisiana

In addition, digital IDs are in development in Connecticut, Florida, Iowa, Kentucky, Utah, Maryland, and Hawaii.

“A mobile driver’s license is really just a proxy of the regular driver’s license,” said John Gilmore, research analyst at online privacy company Abine. “The technology they’re using is simply providing a verification of what they already maintained in their motor vehicle databases.” 

Is the digital license and state ID more secure than your plastic ID card? 

“If that database exists in the state of Arizona, and they have all of that same information in a state database, then your individual ID is no more or less secure than it was before because all of that information can still be lost in a data breach,” Gilmore said.

Several state departments of transportation and department of motor vehicles offices were victims of ransom attacks where their data was compromised. 

Government upgrades 

Gilmore said the federal government is marketing digital IDs as a form of convenience, but it’s really to upgrade and streamline government systems. 

“This is the best quick way to fix our general problem with authenticating citizens’ identities to deliver government services and just processing government…bureaucracy,” he said. 

Privacy Concerns 

Several groups, including the American Civil Liberties Union, have raised privacy concerns about this tech upgrade. 

“They’re concerned this is going to be used to identify people who may be not in good keeping with immigration law, who may be in violation of other things and this will make government’s life easier, will not make the citizen’s life easier,” Gilmore said.

JIMMIE JOHNSON: HOW MANY TIMES HAVE YOU DUG THROUGH YOUR WALLET OR POCKETBOOK TO FIND YOUR DRIVER’S LICENSE? 

WHAT IF YOU CAN DO *THIS* INSTEAD? LET ME EXPLAIN?

FOR THE FIRST TIME – FLYERS CAN CLEAR T-S-A WITH JUST THEIR SMARTPHONE.

IT’S HAPPENING AT  – PHOENIX SKY HARBOR INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, WHERE A DIGITAL DRIVER’S LICENSE OR STATE ID IS JUST AS GOOD AS THE PLASTIC ONE.   

ARIZONA IS THE FIRST IN THE NATION TO USE THIS – WHICH T-S-A HOPES WILL SPEED UP PROCESSING TIMES WHEN IT ROLLS OUT THE SERVICE AT OTHER AIRPORTS ACROSS THE COUNTRY.

 RIGHT NOW, MORE THAN A DOZEN STATES HAVE DIGITAL OR MOBILE DRIVER’S LICENSES – D-D-L OR M-D-L FOR SHORT IN USE OR IN DEVELOPMENT. 

AND MANY OTHERS ARE IN THE DEVELOPMENT STAGE. 

JOHN GILMORE: “A mobile driver’s license is really just a proxy of the regular driver’s license.”

JIMMIE: MEET JOHN GILMORE. HE’S A RESEARCH ANALYST AT ABINE, AN ONLINE PRIVACY COMPANY. 

JOHN: “The technology they’re using is simply providing a verification of what they already maintained and their motor vehicles, databases.”

JIMMIE: SO ARE DIGITAL FORMS OF ID MORE SECURE? 

JOHN: “If that database exists in the state of Arizona, and they have all of that same information in a state database, then your individual ID is no more or less secure than it was before because all of that information can still be lost in a data breach.”

JIMMIE: IN THE LAST DECADE, SEVERAL STATE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION OFFICES DATA HAS BEEN COMPROMISED.

JOHN: “The ransomware attack has access to the information the DMV has collected for the last 15 months.”

JIMMIE: GILMORE SAYS THE DIGITAL I-D IS BEING MARKETED TO AMERICANS AS A FORM OF CONVENIENCE, BUT IT’S REALLY TO UPGRADE AND STREAMLINE GOVERNMENT PROCESSES. 

JOHN: “This is the best quick fix to our general problem with authenticating citizens’ identities, in order to deliver government benefits government services, and also just processing government, you know, bureaucracy.”

JIMMIE: AND THESE TECH UPGRADES DO NOT COME WITHOUT SOME APPREHENSION OVER PRIVACY CONCERNS FROM GROUPS LIKE THE A-C-L-U.

JOHN: ”There concerned this is going to be used to identify people who may be not in good keeping with immigration law, who may be in violation other things and this will make government’s life easier will not make the citizens life easier. “

JIMMIE: ARE YOU READY TO CARRY A DIGITAL DRIVER’S LICENSE INSIDE YOUR SMARTPHONE?   

LET ME KNOW YOUR THOUGHTS IN THE COMMENTS BELOW.

 

For the first time, passengers in Arizona can clear the TSA security checkpoints using their digital driver’s license or state ID on their Apple smartphone. On March 23, Phoenix Sky Harbor became the first airport to offer this option instead of physical, plastic ID cards. 

Is a digital license or state ID coming to a city near you? 

More than a dozen states currently utilize a digital or mobile driver’s license, including Arizona, Colorado, Delaware, Georgia, Oklahoma, and Louisiana

In addition, digital IDs are in development in Connecticut, Florida, Iowa, Kentucky, Utah, Maryland, and Hawaii.

“A mobile driver’s license is really just a proxy of the regular driver’s license,” said John Gilmore, research analyst at online privacy company Abine. “The technology they’re using is simply providing a verification of what they already maintained in their motor vehicle databases.” 

Is the digital license and state ID more secure than your plastic ID card? 

“If that database exists in the state of Arizona, and they have all of that same information in a state database, then your individual ID is no more or less secure than it was before because all of that information can still be lost in a data breach,” Gilmore said.

Several state departments of transportation and department of motor vehicles offices were victims of ransom attacks where their data was compromised. 

Government upgrades 

Gilmore said the federal government is marketing digital IDs as a form of convenience, but it’s really to upgrade and streamline government systems. 

“This is the best quick way to fix our general problem with authenticating citizens’ identities to deliver government services and just processing government…bureaucracy,” he said. 

Privacy Concerns 

Several groups, including the American Civil Liberties Union, have raised privacy concerns about this tech upgrade. 

“They’re concerned this is going to be used to identify people who may be not in good keeping with immigration law, who may be in violation of other things and this will make government’s life easier, will not make the citizen’s life easier,” Gilmore said.

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