Completion of the ISO 18013-5 Standard Marks Big Step for the Future of the Global Mobile Driver’s License Ecosystem

It was recently announced that the ISO/IEC 18013-5 international standard for mobile driver’s licenses (mDLs) and mobile IDs (mIDs) was unanimously approved for publication on August 18, 2021. This exciting news was the result of more than six years of effort through an open collaboration of issuers, technology providers, regional authorities (such as AAMVA, EReg, AustRoads, and the African Tripartite), and businesses that accept identity documents to approve transactions.

GET Group North America is pleased to have been integral to the process and has remained steadfastly committed to ensuring our mDL technology for both issuers and verifiers is fully compliant with this standard. The state of Utah is conducting a pilot with our technology, which is the first pilot in the country to fully comply with ISO/IEC 18013-5. This compliance enables completely contactless, unequivocal confirmation of identity information without relying on visual inspection of an ID – which is subjective and difficult. Compliance with the standard will ensure mDLs and mIDs issued in one state will be recognized as legal forms of ID anywhere in the world. This is essential to the continued growth of a global mDL ecosystem.

ISO 18013-5 was developed based on Privacy by Design Principles. It specifies interoperable technical mechanisms to obtain and trust the data from an mDL for in-person transactions. Data transfer is only initiated by the mDL holder after giving affirmative consent. There are pivotal privacy technologies designed into the standard. Using the standard can reduce liability concerns for the verifier associated with storing personal data (such as photocopying and retaining a copy of a physical driver’s license). ISO 18013-5-compliant mDLs provide greater privacy protections than physical ID cards, including:

  • Allowing the phone to always stay in the citizen’s control. The phone with an mDL never needs to be handed over for a physical inspection of an ID document.
  • Allowing the citizen to share only data that’s relevant to the transaction, such as whether they are over 18 or 21 without disclosing their full birthday or other sensitive information such as their home address.
  • Giving the citizen full control to release data elements requested by a relying party (verifier).
  • Providing explicit notification to an mDL holder if a verifier intends to retain their information, thus allowing them to know if/when their data is stored. That can also allow verifiers to avoid the liability of retaining ID data.
  • Resistance to tracking; there is no unique identifier to see where a citizen has used their mDL. GET Mobile ID rotates any possible identifiers making correlation difficult.

Read more from GET Group North America’s David Kelts about how to use the ISO 18013-5 standard here.

Fighting Identity Fraud with ISO 18013-5-Compliant Mobile ID Technology Requiring Cryptographic Proof

Underage drinking in a serious problem in the United States. There are an estimated 10.8 million underage drinkers and almost 1/3 of all fatal drunk-driving cases involve someone under the age of 21[i]. Having a fake ID has become something of a rite of passage for many teens. A 2019 survey found that nearly 50% of people got their first fake ID before they were 18, and nearly 90% of people faced no legal repercussions whatsoever when their fake ID failed.[ii]. During the first six months of 2020, the Chicago U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers seized nearly 20,000 counterfeit U.S. driver’s licenses while working at Chicago’s O’Hare airport alone. Many were intended to be used by the underaged for purposes of illegally securing alcohol or tobacco products[iii].

But spotting a fake ID can be a difficult and subjective task.  A server or bartender is required to assess characteristics such as the thickness of the ID, the photo quality and the use of official marks and holograms which vary from state to state[iv]. The more expensive and professional the fake, the harder it can be to detect There’s a lot on the line for the server and their employer.

A restaurant or bar that serves alcohol to someone under 21 can face serious penalties — including charges, fines, loss of license and perhaps even jail time. The owner of the restaurant and/or the waitperson who served the alcohol can be held personally accountable. For the establishment, its liquor license may be suspended or permanently revoked, and the business may even be shut down. Anyone who sells or serves alcohol can also be held liable for injuries or damages caused by those who consume it, such as those that result from a drunk driving accident[v].

Going digital can help combat the prevalence of fake IDs, but only if done correctly. There are many aspects of the physical driver’s license (DL) that are easily copied or spoofed and can be replicated on any mobile phone with relative ease. Therefore, a “visual representation” of an mDL cannot be made secure and verifiers won’t be able to trust it. These types of vulnerabilities could severely limit the adoption of mobile driver’s license (mDLs) by most states.

Fortunately, there is a better approach to mobile IDs – one that will make mDLs more secure, tamper-proof, and easier to verify than physical IDs. Therefore, this removes the guesswork for bartenders and waitstaff. This cryptographic proof of ID, makes it a trustworthy, official, government-issued mobile credential that complies with ISO 18013-5. The government Issuer (DMV) e-signs the data and puts it under the control of the mDL holder (the citizen), to be used via electronic transfer. The verifier can confirm the DMV’s eSignature without touching the ID or phone. There is no way to tamper with the data that was e-signed by the issuer, reducing the possibility for fraud.

The American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators’ (AAMVA) mDL Implementation Guidelines mandate compliance with ISO 18013-5 for secure mDL interoperability. GET Group North America has actively participated in this ISO standardization effort since its inception. As a result, GET Mobile ID implements the full functionality of ISO 18013-5. By adhering to the ISO standard, verifiers such as restaurants, bars and liquor stores worldwide can authenticate the validity of an mDL and the identity data of the citizen presenting the credential, even if they are not in the issuing jurisdiction.

Mobile ID technology also provides benefits to the ID holder, giving them greater control over their identity information than possible with a physical ID credential. This can ultimately help prevent identity theft and other misuse of their personal information. The mDL holder controls the amount and type of data transferred to verifiers. Licensees can, for example, release only the relevant data to show that they are over 18 or over 21 without sharing other details not pertinent to the sale of alcohol, tobacco and other age-restricted products (such as their home address or license number).

Learn more about how GET Group North America can enable safer and more secure identity transactions that may help prevent ID fraud; click here to schedule a 15-minute demo.


[i] Underage Drinking Accident Statistics | LegalMatch

[ii] Fake ID Usage in the U.S.

[iii] CBP have seized nearly 20K fake IDs in first six months of 2020 (

[iv] Bouncer Insight: How To Spot A Fake ID – Society19

[v] How to Prevent Underage Drinking at Your Bar or Restaurant | Tabak Insurance

Using a Mobile Driver’s License at Retail Stores

Verifying personal identification or age is an important part of doing business. Businesses of all sizes are relying on proof of identity for age-restricted purchases. When in line at the store to buy liquor or tobacco, nothing is worse than the realization that you’ve forgotten your driver’s license or ID card at home. Even if a customer looks well over the legal purchasing age, the cashier must verify their birthdate using a government-issued ID or the company could be put at risk. Usually, if one forgets their license, they are out of luck – but what if their driver’s license was safely and securely stored on their phone just like contactless payment options? A mobile driver’s license (mDL) can provide age verification safely and securely for retail purchases that require ID.

Authentication of a person’s ID without the need to physically change hands increases the safety for both the cashier and their customer. Additionally, an mDL puts the customer in control of their identity.  It also allows them to choose the amount of personal identity data that is shared for a transaction which is not possible with a physical driver’s license. While a traditional driver’s license gives a cashier access to all of a citizen’s personal data, mobile ID technology allows the mDL holder to only share the data required to complete a specific transaction. For example, a grocery store clerk may only receive a customer’s “over 21” status, photo, first name, and validity of the ID.

Mobile driver’s licenses provide a contactless “Tap & Go” ID transaction similar to tap and pay. Like a mobile wallet, for an mDL to be secure and effective you cannot simply show a photo, rendering, or mock-up of a license. Visual authentication is too easy to fake. Instead, ISO 18013-5-compliant mDLs are a trustworthy, official, government-issued driver’s license/ID. The government issuer e-signs the data and puts it under the control of the mDL holder (the citizen), to be used via electronic transfer. Store clerks (or any verifier) can authenticate eSignatures to immediately ensure the data is authoritative and not tampered with.

Here are a few examples of how mDLs can be used to streamline retail purchases:

Grocery Stores

In 2020, alcohol sales at grocery stores were up over 21% due to the pandemic. With many bars and restaurants unable to serve patrons, citizens turned to their local grocery stores (where grocery store liquor sales are legal) to make their alcohol purchases. Some states are considering loosening alcohol restrictions for retailers. This will increase the likelihood that more consumers will make alcohol purchases alongside their weekly bread and milk. Other age-verified purchases, like tobacco products can also benefit from mDL technology in grocery store settings.

Grocery Store Pharmacies

Many grocery stores now have in-house pharmacies making one-stop shopping even more convenient. Integrating mobile driver’s license technology at the pharmacy can help both customers and pharmacists save time and protect the customer’s identity. For example, a pharmacist can request only a user’s “contact information” (birthday, address, name, photo and validity of the ID). customers are able to keep other personal information private while providing only what they need to in order to complete the transaction.

Convenience Stores

Using mobile ID at convenience stores increases the “convenience” in a transaction. Similar to grocery stores, alcohol sales were up considerably at the height of the pandemic. With many stores seeing greater than usual foot traffic from customers, cutting down on transaction time and providing additional safety measures to protect identity data can help stores streamline the check-out process. Using a mDL at a convenience store allows a customer to share only the information required to make a purchase. Instead of sharing their address and other unnecessary personal information, the mDL holder can quickly and easily share their “over 21 status”. The cashier can remotely validate the information through electronic transfer.

Retail Stores

Outside of grocery and convenience store settings, many states require identification for the purchase of certain items in general retail stores. At home improvement stores, an mDL can be used to verify one’s address or age for the purchase of paint thinners as well as any aerosolized products, including air fresheners and spray paints. In big box retailers, purchasing over-the-counter medicine, like cough syrup and antihistamines, may require your ID to show proof of age. Using an mDL for the purchase of items that require identification allows the mobile ID holder to share only the information required to purchase their items.

Utilizing mobile driver’s license technology for retail settings put’s the customer in control of their data.  Businesses are able to safely verify their identity and/or age effectively. The convenience of mDL makes “showing your ID” as simple as tapping your phone to a reader or pulling up a scannable QR code. Put customers in control of their personal identity with GET mobile ID.

Find out how GET Group North America can support the contactless technology needs of grocery stores, pharmacies, convenience stores and other retailers here. Click here to schedule a 15-minute demo. 

Banking: Contactless ID for Increased Speed and Assurance

Digital identifications such as mobile driver’s licenses (mDLs) have arrived, with several states running pilot programs and moving to production. With consumers’ growing dependence on online banking technologies (open banking[i], ATMs, bank mobile apps and financial consolidators like Mint [ii]), It makes sense for financial institutions to accept digital forms of ID to verify customers’ identities for banking transaction.

Official mobile driver’s licenses and mobile identity cards recognized as a legal form of ID can make everyday banking activities like completing a transaction at your financial institution of choice more convenient and secure.

Financial service guidelines require bankers to verify your identity to make sure you are who you say you are and to capture your legal name and ID number from your driver’s license or other form of ID. A digital ID that resides on your smartphone is not only more convenient but gives you more control than a card. Physical ID cards used as proof of identity can be stolen, altered or faked. Furthermore, when you hand over a plastic ID card, you’re sharing all of your personal information — not just what’s relevant to complete a specific transaction. With mDL, the pertinent ID information that you opt to share can be contactlessly verified with a tap or scan from a verifier device without your phone or a physical card ever having to change hands. Special cryptography provides proof of your identity information, cutting down on attempts to use stolen or falsified ID for transactions.

Your banking information is sensitive – so to keep it safe, your bank uses the highest levels of data security to confirm your identity before accessing your accounts. GET Mobile ID conforms with national and international mDL standards, ensuring global interoperability – meaning you’ll be able to use your mobile ID at banks around the country and even the world as more and more financial institutions begin accepting mDLs. It has been tested for conformance [iii] with those standards and is a highly secure way to identify yourself digitally for banking transactions.

When opening a new account at a financial center, you can tap your GET Mobile ID to the banker’s tablet to verify your identity and confirm your intention to open a new account. After your consent, GET Mobile ID transfers only the required identity data to the bank. Withdrawing funds from your accounts or cashing checks is also easier with GET Mobile ID. Instead of having to remember your account number and hand over your physical ID card, simply identify yourself digitally to the teller’s device. Digital verification cuts down on identity fraud and can allow customers to get in and out of the bank more quickly.

In the future, you could even remotely set up an account through a bank’s phone application or even at the ATM using your GET Mobile ID. With a quick face match to ensure consent and identity, you could digitally transfer personal identity data directly to the bank application for quick processing and the ATM can immediately verify the Mobile ID. Using mDL could alleviate some of the hassles of lighting and network speed when attempting to upload physical identification documents into banking apps. Banking transactions can speed up and carry more assurance with the addition of mobile ID technology.

Interested in learning more about Mobile ID technology? Visit : Business | GET Mobile (





Utah Mobile Driver’s License Pilot Garners National and Global Media Interest

Last month, the state of Utah launched a mobile driver license (mDL) pilot with GET Group NA. The pilot, which will allow citizens to use their driver’s licenses and ID cards on mobile phones, is the first to fully utilize a new ISO standard for mDL which will enable greater security and privacy for identity data.

Below, we’ve compiled a list of notable media coverage of the announcement highlighting the importance of privacy and security for ID holders and verifiers in Utah.

“The pilot will demonstrate an improvement in citizen privacy and security, while also highlighting the convenience and safety of tap and go transactions.”

  • Biometric Update Utah trials GET Group’s digital ID in mobile driver’s license pilot

“Utah DLD has incredible foresight and timing to lead the world with standardized mDLs. We are proud to support Utah DLD as they begin launching a full-scale mDL program,” said GET Group North America President and Managing Director Alex Kambanis. “COVID has accelerated the importance of Contactless ID for both citizens and the businesses that accept ID. Utah DLD is providing Utah residents a huge benefit with financial, security, and health-related impacts.”

  • ComputerWorld Your iPhone could soon be your driver’s license (in Utah)

The state is working on a mobile driving license (mDL) using a combination of technologies including NFC and QR codes as digital proof of ID. Holders of the license will be able to choose what personal information is displayed when the QR code is read, or NFC terminal tapped. This can be used in any situation in which you might be expected to present your driving license, including restaurants and bars.

“All the data is encrypted, and nobody can read any mobile driver’s license without the mDL holder authorizing, or consenting, to that information to be read or consumed by a verifier,” said Scott Vien, director of business development at GET Group North America. “Those sharing options — share age, share all, share address — not only do those limit the amount of data being shared by the choice of the user, but it’s also enabling the ability for the data to be shared,” he said.

Mobile IDs also shift some of the responsibility for determining an ID’s legitimacy from the person checking it to the technology they’re using. Rather than a person needing to memorize the security features to look for on any given state’s cards, verification technology can check it automatically.

That also solves a problem with fake IDs today — they can often fool barcode scanners.

“With those barcodes on the back, there is no way to validate that the data came directly from the issuer,” said David Kelts, product development director of GET Group. “So in fact, good fake IDs have a barcode on the back that is scannable. In this case, using the ISO standard adds that extra layer of check that says, ‘Is this an official ID document?’”

  • MeriTalk Utah is Piloting a Mobile Driver’s License With Baked-In Privacy and Security

The pilot program will include 100 participants, the Utah Department of Public Safety (DPS) announced. A key benefit of the Utah program is the ability to selectively share information, such as just a picture and proof of age, rather than all the information available on a physical card.

  • NFC World Utah to pilot NFC and QR code-enabled mobile driving licenses

“Unlike other pilots, Utah will fully utilise the ISO 18013-5 standard for mDL, which provides the benefit of cryptographic proof of identity that prevents forgery and cannot be achieved by simply showing your phone screen to a clerk at a business.” GET Group North America says.

“Our Driver License Division is committed to working with residents and stakeholders to implement a solution which provides the highest value to Utahns: one which is accepted anywhere and provides enhanced privacy, security and personal control,” said Utah Department of Public Safety Commissioner Jess L. Anderson. “Utahns’ privacy is of the utmost importance to us and the mDL gives them control over their data. They choose what information to share when their identification is requested.”

Given the groundbreaking nature of this pilot program in Utah and what cryptographic proof of ID means for the future of mDL around the world, it has also received international coverage including placements in AsiaOne, Zimbabwe News, Actus France and Nachrichten Aus Berlin.

For more information on the Utah mDL pilot, and how GET Mobile ID is revolutionizing the future of identity, click here.

Airport ID Checks will be Safer, More Secure and Faster with Mobile ID

Air travel requires ID verification at airport check-in and security checkpoints. While airlines have taken the step to implement digital boarding passes, travelers still juggle their carry-on bags, wallets, phones, and must dig out their driver’s licenses or passports to hand them over for verification. Wouldn’t it be great if their IDs could be scanned like the boarding pass can?

COVID-19 has added extra concern for air travelers: transmission in public spaces where people congregate (like in a line to get through security). Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents wear gloves to mitigate transfer of germs, but they handle thousands of ID cards a day – so that is not a perfect solution and it risks the agents’ own health[i].

Mobile IDs (mID) and driver’s licenses (mDL) are part of the solution. Issued by state DMVs, mDLs are housed on individuals’ mobile phones and scanned electronically for verification, eliminating the need for others to handle the credential to verify identity. States are adopting[ii] contactless technology, and mobile IDs will become commonplace this year. The benefits are greatest when many who rely on identity documents, like TSA, accept the mDL and digitally verify it as signed by the issuing authority.

The result is safer, faster, easier, and more secure check-in at the airport.

Why is it Safer?

Contactless transactions are surfacing across multiple use cases to help limit disease transmission.  Consumers have figured out that contactless payment can limit their own risk of exposure and that of the store clerk. QR-code based restaurant menus and payment also provide self-service without contact.

Adoption of contactless payment options has skyrocketed since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. 80 percent of consumers in a 2020 Visa survey said they were concerned about touching payment readers; 54% said they would switch to a new store that accepts contactless payments. In April 2020, just a few months into the pandemic, MasterCard reported that more than half (51%) of Americans had begun using some form of contactless payment. There is unanimous agreement in the industry that the trend is here to stay.

Mobile Driver’s Licenses provide the same opportunity for contactless transactions because the ID document never has to leave your hands. You can tap, scan, or share your identity data under their own control. NFC, QR codes, Bluetooth, and online lookups are all possible.

Why is it More Secure?

Like a physical ID card, GET Mobile ID is used for age and identity verification. Unlike physical cards, mobile phone screens do not have “linked and layered” security features, and data displayed on a mobile phone screen cannot be verified or trusted. It takes just a few minutes to photoshop a new ID.

To combat acceptance of falsified ID documents, the ISO 18013-5 mDL standard was created for easily obtaining secure and reliable data from a mobile ID on a phone. An ISO 18013-5 compliant mobile ID is actually less prone to counterfeit than a physical card, which can be stolen, altered or faked.

ISO 18013-5-compliant mDLs are trustworthy, official, government-issued driver’s licenses or IDs on a smart phone. The government issuer e-signs the data and puts it under the control of the mDL holder (the citizen), to be used via electronic transfer. Verifiers can authenticate eSignatures to immediately ensure the data is accurate and has not been tampered with.

Why is it Faster?

Mobile driver’s licenses provide a contactless “Tap & Go” ID transaction comparable to making a payment with the tap of smartphone.

TSA is leading the way by requiring ISO 18013-5 for accepting mobile IDs, and American Airlines is implementing mobile ID verification at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) and Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA). American can roll the program out to more locations in the future. The airline is working with TSA to explore broader use of mobile ID verification in airports.

GET Mobile ID

Leave your wallet at home. GET Mobile ID provides a high-assurance ID on a user’s mobile device that can be accepted everywhere. It implements the full ISO 18013-5 standard. Cryptographic proof of ID helps combat identity fraud with a more convenient, secure and instant alternative to traditional physical ID documents.

GET Mobile ID fully supports ISO 18013-5 so that citizens can use their ID everywhere, from point of sale at the supermarket to the airport. The options for contactless ID are endless. GET Mobile ID utilizes formidable data encryption algorithms and communication security to combat fraud, reduce identity theft, and allow interoperability while putting the citizen in control of their ID. ISO 18013-5 does not require a specific card reader for acceptance; it can interface through Bluetooth, NFC, WiFi Aware, or barcode readers. ISO 18013-5 can be built into existing point of service devices.

Using Mobile ID for airport check-in is an upgrade to the travel experience for passengers, with the peace of mind knowing their data is safe and their COVID exposure is limited. Together we can limit transmission.




Mobile Driver’s Licenses Offer COVID-Safe Contactless ID Option for Pharmacies

David Kelts, Director of Product Development, Mobile Identity, GET Group North America

In October 2020, the New South Wales (NSW) Road Transport Amendment (Digital Licensing) Bill gave digital licenses the same legal standing as physical ID cards. This allows, among other use cases, pharmacists in New South Wales to accept a patient’s mobile driver’s license (mDL) instead of a physical ID when purchasing restricted OTC medications such as pseudoephedrine[i]. With Florida poised to become the first U.S. state to widely offer trustworthy ISO-compliant mobile driver’s licenses to its residents[ii] in 2021, pharmacies in America are likely to soon follow suit.

Driven by the global COVID-19 pandemic, the concept of contactless ID is catching fire. Authenticating a person’s ID without the need for a physical credential (or their mobile device) to change hands increases safety for both the pharmacist and their customer. Additionally, a mobile driver’s license gives control over one’s identity data that’s not possible with physical cards. While traditional physical identity documents provide verifiers access to all the citizen’s personal information, mobile ID utilizes data minimization which allows the mDL holder to only share the data required to complete a specific transaction. For example, pharmacies only receive user’s “contact information” (birthday, address, name, photo, and validity of the identification document). This is different from a liquor store, which would only require a user’s “over 21” status, photo, first name, and validity of the ID.

Mobile driver’s licenses provide a contactless “Tap & Go” ID transaction comparable to making a payment with the tap of smartphone. Similar to a credit card on a phone, for an mDL to be secure and effective you cannot simply show a photo, rendering, or mock-up of a license. Visual authentication is too easy to fake. Instead, ISO 18013-5-compliant mDLs are a trustworthy, official, government-issued driver’s license/ID on a mobile phone. The government issuer e-signs the data and puts it under the control of the mDL holder (the citizen), to be used via electronic transfer. Pharmacists (or any verifier) can authenticate eSignatures to immediately ensure the data is authoritative and not tampered with. Specific to the pharmacy use case, it is important to ensure an ID has not been tampered with so that only the intended recipient is obtaining medications.

Find out  how GET Group North America can support the contactless ID technology needs of pharmacies and other verifiers here. Click here to schedule a 15-minute demo.





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Reimagining the Post-COVID Restaurant Experience with Contactless ID

David Kelts, Director of Product Development, Mobile Identity, GET Group North America

You can provide a more personalized and healthier restaurant experience with Contactless ID

The COVID Restaurant Problem

In the United States, the National Restaurant Association anticipates the restaurant industry will sustain $240 billion in losses by the end of 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Between March and April, it had already lost $80 billion in sales[i]. According to data from Yelp, restaurants and retail were the two business areas hit hardest by the impacts of COVID. In March, the first month of widespread U.S. quarantines and restrictions, restaurants had the highest number of business closures and have continued to experience high closure rates as they struggle to adapt to new and evolving safety guidelines and widespread public health concerns. Running on thin margins and struggling to break even, many restaurants were unable to bounce back from the months of financial loss caused by mandatory shutdowns. By early summer, 23,981 restaurants had closed, and Yelp found 53% of those closures are permanent.[ii]

Restaurants that have recently reopened have to navigate this socially distanced new world. It is not easy to keep employees and customers safe, adhere to shifting government regulations, and maintaining the public’s confidence. Luckily, during summer of 2020, beautiful weather allowed restaurants to offer outdoor dining. This ingenuity resulted in reclaimed parking lots turned into lively and romantic settings to dine. As warm summer temperatures cool off into chill fall nights, patio heaters may no longer suffice. What do we do now?

How can we protect health while returning to what we enjoy – dining out?

Many restauranteurs have invested in contactless solutions[iii], such as digital menu boards or mobile menus accessed via QR codes, to cut down on physical exchanges where germs could potentially be spread. Customers and restaurants are opting for contactless payment – tap cards, phone payments, and QR code-driven restaurant checks.

While many restaurants have worked to minimize the spread of germs via digital menu solutions, there is still concern for contamination when a bartender or waitstaff needs to check a patron’s ID to verify their age. To date, a thorough look at an ID requires handing over a physical credential but now, the prospect of mobile driver’s licenses (mDL) opens the potential for accurate Contactless ID checks.

Contactless ID using Mobile Driver’s License (mDL)

An mDL[iv] used in contactless transactions cannot simply be a photo or mock-up of a license on a phone. Photos are too easily manipulated and may still require that waitstaff physically take hold of or touch the patron’s phone. This would be less efficient than a physical card; less safe from a health standpoint, as statistics show that each square inch of a cell phone may contain a whopping 25,000 germs[v]; and could even increase identity fraud. In contrast, an ISO 18013–5-compliant mDL creates the possibility of trustworthy, official, government-issued mDLs and IDs on a mobile phone. An ISO 18013-5 compliant mDL is an actual ID on the patron’s phone. The government issuer (DMV) e-signs the data and puts it under the control of the mDL holder (the citizen), to be used via electronic transfer. A restaurant employee can verify the DMV’s eSignature via an “over the shoulder” QR scan method or a quick tap on the employee’s mobile device on a payment terminal. The restaurant receives only the data they need without ever touching the ID card, the patron’s mobile device, or having to get within minimum social distance.

Making Contactless More Personal and an Improved Experience

As adoption of mDL technology becomes widespread, it also opens the door for other contactless experiences in restaurants, such as virtual “check-ins”, allowing patrons to announce their arrival via Bluetooth instead of going to a host/hostess. Not only could this help promote increased social distancing, it could also allow for a more customized dining experience. Imagine arriving to a restaurant with a personalized greeting from the server and not having to fumble through your wallet to find your ID because your age was verified prior to sitting down. In a society where 63% of consumers value the experience more than the item purchased[vi], being at the forefront of implementing safer and more personalized practices with mobile ID can help a restaurant differentiate itself from those that are sticking with antiquated practices.

Find out how GET Group North America can meet your contactless ID technology needs here. Click here to schedule a 15-minute demo.








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The Importance of Contactless ID in a Post-COVID World

David Kelts, Director of Product Development, Mobile Identity, GET Group North America

As the world emerges from the global COVID-19 shutdown and adjusts to an uncharted “new normal”, all forms of contactless transactions are becoming increasingly necessary. Economies are reopening but the threat of COVID-19 resurging is forcing companies to continuously evolve and adapt. While convenience and fraud protection were previously driving demand[i] for high-assurance mobile ID technology and online identity[ii], the potential advantages[iii] of contactless ID now include health[iv] and personal safety[v].

To initially stop the transmission of COVID-19, states shut down the majority of their economies and required extreme new protocols for essential transactions. Now, as governments proceed with phased plans for safely regaining normalcy while maintaining physical distance, adopting contactless ID –presenting identity without handing over a card from your pocket[vi] — can limit the risk of virus transmission between ID verifiers (such as law enforcement officers, TSA Agents, airlines[vii], or retailers[viii]) and the card holder.  As government leaders continue to invest in ways to keep citizens safe, contactless ID should become a new standard, in conjunction with mask-wearing policies and recommending at least six feet of distance.

Government ID Issuers have a new role to play in protecting our society

To improve health and safety, retailers are moving age-based purchases to online delivery, checking ID through the front door glass, and offering drop-and-go delivery. The difficulty with this is that authenticating the ID and visually verifying the identity of the card holder is obscured by distance and the drop in accuracy is sharp. Fortunately, technology for contactless ID exists now[ix] and there is a better way to perform ID checking[x]. With a mobile driver’s license (mDL)[xi], we have the ability to distance these transactions, similarly to what has previously been done by taking payments to contactless “Tap & Go”.

While the benefits of expediting widespread adoption of contactless ID are increasingly apparent post-COVID, it is also important to do it in a safe and secure way that protects against fraud and identity theft and safeguards citizen privacy[xii]. Therefore, an mDL[xiii] used in contactless transactions cannot simply be a photo or mock-up of a license on a phone. Instead, an ISO 18013–5-compliant mDL creates the possibility of trustworthy, official, government-issued mDLs and IDs on our mobile phones. The government issuer e-signs the data and puts it under the control of the mDL holder (the citizen), to be used via electronic transfer—just like payment cards.  Unlike with physical identity documents, the mDL holder consents to share only the personal information that is relevant to the transaction.  The verifier (shops, restaurants, rental counters and everyone that relies on government ID) can verify eSignatures to receive only the data they need without ever physically handling the card holder’s mobile device or having to get close enough to check a physical ID card.

Government IDs can be securely issued to our mobile phones for us to use

In conclusion, contactless payment and ID are more necessary than ever and governments should adopt contactless ID for the public’s safety by rolling out mobile ID technology.  With government-issued mDLs, the possibilities of improving the safety, health, security, and privacy of our ID-proofing transactions are numerous.  The COVID-19 pandemic has clearly shown all of us how necessary and important this is.

Find out  how GET Group North America can support the contactless ID technology needs of both identity document issuers and verifiers here.






[vi] Item #7









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