Internet Explorer 11 is not supported

For optimal browsing, we recommend Chrome, Firefox or Safari browsers.

Florida Hopes to Offer Smartphone Driver’s License by 2021

A pilot program through the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles will determine whether to store state-issued driver’s license on smartphones. The move could curb identity theft, card skimmers and even the spread of COVID.

(TNS) — Want to keep your driver’s license handy without lugging around a purse or wallet? As soon as next year, there could be an app for that.

Just as house and car keys, bank cards, plane tickets and proof of car insurance have evolved from physical objects to digital apps, a pilot program through the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles will soon determine whether the time has come to store your state-issued driver’s license on your smartphone.

It’s a concept that has gained traction with pilot programs in other states as a way to curb identity theft, card skimmers and even the spread of coronavirus. Louisiana started offering a limited version in 2018, but Florida could be the first in the nation to offer motorists a digital, hands-free driver’s license option for all uses.

The state will launch a pilot program in December. “As ID fraud becomes more frequent and sophisticated, we made it a priority to reinforce ID verification by adding extra software security technologies," said Tony Lo Brutto , a vice president at cybersecurity firm Thales, selected to launch driver’s license app and associated verification program.

If all goes well, motorists can choose to apply for both a physical driver’s license and an electronic copy that can be downloaded as an app to a smartphone or tablet. The program has already been approved by the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators, the nation’s umbrella agency for motor vehicle departments, and it meets all personal identification requirements of the International Organization for Standardization, Thales said.

That means the mobile app could be used as identification domestically and overseas.

It will carry the same information as the traditional cards, including driving privileges and restrictions. But with the information now cloud-based, police officers, bartenders and others can more easily determine authenticity. What’s more, users can be selective in how much personal information they turn over.

“Let’s say you’re 21 and have to show I.D. before you walk into a bar," said Hillsborough County Tax Collector Doug Belden . “With this technology, you can pull out your phone, select what kind of verification you need and show it to the man at the door without your phone ever leaving your hand."

You could limit the information you provide to your photo and age, If you just need to prove your old enough to get in, you can choose to only may be able to only show your DMV photo, so he can determine you look like the person in the photo, and a screen that says whether you are 21-years-old or older. He doesn’t have to see your exact date of birth, where you live, your full name - all of that information is kept private.”

State offices like Belden’s already maintain massive databases of personal information, accessible by authorities, with every driver’s license issued, he said. The wallet-sized cards are simply a pared-down version. But there’s greater security in a digital version, with information kept behind the passcode, pin number or fingerprint-triggered security locks built into most phones and tablets.

If it is lost or stolen, the Thales app enables users to wipe their personal information. In addition, renewals and change of address would be a snap. The no-contact app also means less chance of contacting germs like the coronavirus.

How much it would cost is still being worked out. The price of a standard Class E license in Florida now is $48, first time or renewal. There’s a $35 fee to replace a lost or stolen card. Louisiana charges an additional $5.99 for its app, accepted only for traffic stops inside the state’s borders.

“I’m excited for this innovation project that will make the state of Florida a national leader in offering secure and trusted mobile identification," Terry Rhodes , executive director of highway safety and motor vehicles, said in a statement to the Tampa Bay Times.

“We have made a sustained commitment to the modernization of nearly every aspect of what our department does and how customers access our services, and Thales will be a great partner as Florida now steps into the future of mobile identification.”

Thales is also working with 11 other states and five Canadian provinces on mobile driver’s license and personal identification programs, the company said. The company launched the first successful pilot program in 2016 in partnership from the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology.

(c)2020 The Tampa Bay Times (St. Petersburg, Fla.) Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.



Special Projects
Sponsored Stories
In recent years, local governments have been forced to adapt to a wildly changing world, especially as it pertains to sending bills and collecting payments.
Workplace safety is in the spotlight as government leaders adapt to a prolonged pandemic.
While government employees, students and the general public had to wait in line for hours in the beginning of the pandemic, at-home test kits make it easy to diagnose for the novel coronavirus in less than 30 minutes.
Governments around the nation are working to design the best vaccine policies that keep both their employees and their residents safe. Although the latest data shows a variety of polarizing perspectives, there are clear emerging best practices that leading governments are following to put trust first: creating policies that are flexible and provide a range of options, and being in tune with the needs and sentiments of their employees so that they are able to be dynamic and accommodate the rapidly changing situation.
Service delivery and the individual experience within health and human services (HHS) is often very siloed and fragmented.
In this episode, Marianne Steger explains why health care for Pre-Medicare retirees and active employees just got easier.
Government organizations around the world are experiencing the consequences of plagiarism firsthand. A simple mistake can lead to loss of reputation, loss of trust and even lawsuits. It’s important to avoid plagiarism at all costs, and government organizations are held to a particularly high standard. Fortunately, technological solutions such as iThenticate allow government organizations to avoid instances of text plagiarism in an efficient manner.
Creating meaningful citizen experiences in a post-COVID world requires embracing digital initiatives like secure and ethical data sharing, artificial intelligence and more.
GHD identified four themes critical for municipalities to address to reach net-zero by 2050. Will you be ready?