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Using Your iPhone for Secure Identification

The modern iPhone is becoming smarter with every release and update issued by Apple. While we now have nearly all the luxuries of a full-scale computer that fits in our pocket, and one that can even double as a point-of-sale device, we haven’t really been able to use our iPhones to prove our identity – until now.

Introducing the iPhone Digital Identification Card

Officially unveiled in June 2021, Apple is touting their new digital identification card as a highly secure and convenient method of personal identification. It’s usable in both remote and in-person settings and, when paired with other security features, such as fingerprint or facial scanning, could help reduce fraud across the board.

Despite its newness, multiple states within the U.S. have already agreed to accept Apple’s digital identification card in place of a valid driver’s license or state-issued ID. The states include Georgia, Arizona, Connecticut, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Maryland, Utah, and Iowa.

Jennifer Bailey, vice president of Apple Pay and Apple Wallet, stated in a recent press release: “The addition of driver’s licenses and state IDs to Apple Wallet is an important step in our vision of replacing the physical wallet with a secure and easy-to-use mobile wallet. We are excited that the TSA and so many states are already on board to help bring this to life for travelers across the country using only their iPhone and Apple Watch, and we are already in discussions with many more states as we’re working to offer this nationwide in the future.”

Apple ID In the Sky

To further support the roll-out of Apple’s new digital identification cards, the Transportation Security Administration, or TSA, will begin accepting the digital ID at certain security checkpoints within specific airports. The exact airports participating in the initial roll-out have yet to be announced.

David Pekoske, administrator with the TSA, was quoted in a recent press release as saying: “This new and innovative mobile driver’s license and state ID initiative with Apple and states around the country will enable a more seamless airport security screening experience for travelers. This initiative marks a major milestone by TSA to provide an additional level of convenience for the traveler by enabling more opportunities for touchless TSA airport security screening.”

Following a Similar Model

While smartphones have yet to be used for personal identification at this level, consumers have been using similar technology to store credit cards on their iPhones. The process for adding a driver’s license or ID is very similar.

Simply load Apple Wallet on your iPhone and tap the + button. From there, use your iPhone’s camera to scan your physical driver’s license or state-issued identification card. You’ll also be asked to take a selfie for further verification.

For additional security, users will be asked to complete several specific facial and head movements during this process. The digital document will then be added to your wallet once it has been verified.

To use your Apple digital identification card, simple tap your iPhone or Apple Watch on the identity reader. Users are never required to hand over their physical device to anyone who is requested identification or verification.


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