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Homeland Security

Secure Driver's Licenses

Preventing terrorists from obtaining state-issued identification documents is critical to securing America against terrorism. As the 9/11 Commission noted, "For terrorists, travel documents are as important as weapons." The 9/11 Commission Report: Final Report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks upon the United States, at 384 (2004).

Secure driver's licenses and identification documents are a vital component of a holistic national security strategy. Law enforcement must be able to rely on government-issued identification documents and know that the bearer of such a document is who he or she claims to be. Obtaining fraudulent identification documents presents an opportunity for terrorists to board airplanes, rent cars, open bank accounts, or conduct other activities without being detected. The 9/11 Commission recommended that the Federal Government work with other layers of government to solidify the security of government-issued documents. Securing state-issued identification documents is a common-sense national security and law enforcement imperative, which also helps to combat identity fraud and illegal immigration. 

Check the status of your state regarding REAL ID.

Update: Due to the expiration of New Hampshire’s and Idaho’s extensions, enforcement is scheduled to begin for these states on January 19. 2015.  See “Enforcement in Brief” for details.

Update: Effective immediately, Alaska and Massachusetts have received an extension through October 10, 2015, allowing Federal agencies to continue to accept for official purposes driver’s licenses and identification cards from these states.

Update: Effective immediately, Washington has received an extension through October 10, 2015, allowing Federal agencies to continue to accept for official purposes driver’s licenses and identification cards from this state.

Update: Effective immediately, Oklahoma has received an extension through October 10, 2015, allowing Federal agencies to continue to accept for official purposes driver’s licenses and identification cards from this state.

Last Published Date: April 1, 2015
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