Making Ohio driver licenses and identification cards more secure

COLUMBUS — In an effort to ensure greater security and identification protection for customers, and to comply with federal regulations, the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles is introducing a single, central point of production for state driver licenses and identification cards, effective July 2, 2018.

Licenses and identification cards will no longer be produced while you wait at each of the more than 180 Deputy Registrar offices statewide. While customers will still go to a Deputy Registrar for license and card renewals or other transactions, they will receive their driver licenses and identification cards by mail rather than over the counter. Only a temporary proof of transaction will be issued at a Deputy Registrar location.

The extra level of security provided through centralized card production provides greater protection against counterfeiting and complies with all state and federal security standards. Ohio will be joining 41 other states to provide driver licenses and identification cards through the mail. Centralizing the production of driver licenses and identification cards will reduce driver license fraud and identify theft by:

  • Ensuring driver licenses and identification cards are issued to legitimate cardholders only;
  • Preventing loss and theft of secure materials from Deputy Registrar agencies; and
  • Providing a more secure printing environment, sparing the state the costs associated with security renovations at local Deputy Registrar agencies.

What will change?

Beginning July 2, 2018, customers will be:

  • Receiving their state driver licenses and identification cards by mail in about 10 days after visiting a Deputy Registrar;
  • Receiving a temporary card/confirmation of driving privileges until the card arrives in the mail; and
  • Having the option to have a driver license or identification card that is acceptable for federal identification purposes.

A new option for meeting national travel security requirements. New federal travel restrictions requiring secure identification go into effect October 2020 and Ohio is getting a jump-start on this process beginning July 2, 2018.

Customers interested in using their state-issued credential for access to federal facilities or services, such as airport security screening by the Transportation Safety Administration for boarding commercial airlines, may choose to obtain a credential that meets all federal requirements.

Customers choosing this option when obtaining a new or renewed license or identification card will be required to provide documentation proving their name and date of birth (such as a birth certificate or passport), Social Security number (such as a Social Security card) and two additional documents proving residential address (such as utility bills).

Customers not interested in or not needing to use their state-issued credential for federal identification purposes will have the option of obtaining a standard driver license or identification card without additional document requirements beyond those currently in place.

What will NOT change?

Deputy Registrars will continue to be part of the driver license and identification card process. Customers will still initiate driver license and identification card transactions by visiting a Deputy Registrar agency, presenting documents (as needed) and be photographed. Driver licenses and identification cards will continue to be valid for four years and require a new photograph with every renewal. Customer costs will remain the same for both the standard and compliant cards.