Delaware gets more secure driver’s license

    New security measures will make the state’s driver’s licenses more secure, and could reduce resident’s exposure to identity theft.

    A few decades ago, Delaware’s ID and driver’s licenses were notoriously popular with young people from nearby states who would exploit the lack security of the state’s licenses to make fake IDs -according to New York magazine, even Lady Gaga once possessed a fake Delaware ID.

    But that trend, while greatly reduced with the introduction of  digital formatting  in 1998, is certainly over as the state rolls out its new license and ID program featuring high tech security measures.  “It would be virtually impossible for them to do it with this new one,” says Jennifer Cohan, director of the Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles.

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    In addition to new security features including micro-printing and ultraviolet features, the new license will also be more secure because of the process all residents will have to go through to get one.  The days of walking into the DMV with just your old license and walking out with a new one are over.  Now, the state is requiring a one-time revalidation of  all documents used to get a driver’s license.  Translation: to renew your license, you’ll have to bring your birth certificate, Social Security card, and two forms of proof of Delaware residency.  “Our motto is, ‘Collect it, bring it, and secure it,’ because once you have one of these secure cards, the probability of identity theft is greatly reduced,” says Cohan.

    The new secure license procedures will be implemented on July 1.  The changes stem from recommendations from the 9/11 Commission and the subsequent approval of the Real ID Act of 2005.  Cohan says, “Delaware is way ahead of a lot other states because we’re small.  We received significant federal funding.  Not only did we have to revamp our process, but we also had to put into place building security, inventory security.”  She says while it is a major change, it will be well worth it.

    Comprehensive details about what is required are available at dmv.de.gov.

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