Digital Driver’s License: a step on the roadmap to online identity

Everyday life is leading us towards a totally virtual environment. On that tour, the digital driver’s license (DDL) is one of the next stops. The aforementioned document is one of the most used today in the world to confirm our identity, as well as relevant information about who we are.

The also known as a mobile driver’s license is a document that is included within the classification of electronic ID. To date it has been implemented in different nations, under operability, security and, above all, data protection standards.

: What is a digital driver’s license?

Going back to its origin, historically the driver’s license has been a document that not only validates the skills for driving vehicles, but also serves to verify personal data such as full name, date of birth, age and place of residence.

Taking the previous definition into account, we define the digital driver’s license as the same physical document, but now in virtual format. This will lead to the development of apps or platforms that allow the creation and / or authentication in real time of the users, as well as the management by the relevant authorities.

We always carry the digital driver’s license on our mobile devices. Photo by takahiro taguchi on Unsplash

Advantages of a mobile driver’s license

Until today, the physical driver’s license only allows you to drive the type of vehicle for which you obtained it. Now, the arrival of the mobile driver’slicense brings new advantages with it.

  • Convenience for users, who can access the updated version of the document from their mobile devices.
  • Access to the license both online and offline.
  • Available on your phone: it is easier to forget the printed license at home than the cell phone. it is easier to forget the printed license at home than the cell phone.
  • Provides authorities with facilities to verify data, add infractions and notify the user in real time.
  • It can also function as an identity document, proof one´s age and for renting a car.
  • High levels of data protection security.

Leading companies in creating a digital driver’s license

In the field of online identity, specifically in the creation of platforms for mobile driving licenses, there are several important companies in the current context: IDEMIA, Thales and Gelmato.


The first one has succeeded in the area of ​​online identity and digital driver’s license in the United States. IDEMIA promotes the concept of Augmented Identity. This company claims in its website “extensive experience in personal identity, public security, commercial markets, biometric identification and document authentication has no equal.”

This trajectory is supported by her more than fifty years as a trusted partner of US government agencies. The experience gained today makes it the number one company in the issuance of driver’s licenses and identity documents in this country.

Thales and Gelmato

On the other hand, Thales and Gelmato, joined in April 2019, when the first acquired the second. In this way, it remained as a global leader in identity and security issues, according to Business Wire data.

Thales, a French company created in 2000, works in the transportation, security, space, aeronautics and defense sectors, creating new solutions for its clients. “As the world gets more and more connected, Thales makes it safer,” so it says ont its website.

Unifying the digital driver’s license as a valid document not only for traffic authorities, but also as identification for the banking or health system is a big step in the path towards the social identity network. That unique platform will soon arrive.

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Aline Marie Rodríguez

Journalist with my pen and my lens. Photography lover.

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