Americans born after Dec. 1, 1964, will have to get more secure driver’s licenses in the next six years under ambitious post-9/11 security rules to be unveiled Friday by federal officials. The Homeland Security Department has spent years crafting the final regulations for the REAL ID Act, a law designed to make it harder for terrorists, illegal immigrants and con artists to get government-issued identification. The effort once envisioned to take effect in 2008 has been pushed back in the hopes of winning over skeptical state officials.
Even with more time, more federal help and technical advances, REAL ID still faces stiff opposition from civil liberties groups.
Among other details of the REAL ID plan:
_The traditional driver’s license photograph would be taken at the beginning of the application instead of the end so that should someone be rejected for failure to prove identity and citizenship, the applicant’s photo would be kept on file and checked in the future if that person attempted to con the system again.
_The cards will have three layers of security measures but will not contain microchips as some had expected. States will be able to choose from a menu which security measures they will put in their cards.