And so it begins….
Enforcement of the REAL ID Act will begin in April, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced. The enforcement will start in steps within restricted areas of DHS headquarters, followed by a phased approach with substantial enforcement in 2016.
The REAL ID Act prohibits the federal government from accepting driver’s licenses and ID cards that do not meet minimum security standards set by DHS no later than May 2017. The minimum standards require that driver’s license security features be routinely upgraded to be counterfeit resistant and require applicants to provide documentary proofs to confirm true identity.
REAL ID compliant driver’s licenses and ID cards are key elements of the nation’s” homeland security” strategy. Enforcement of the law will clarify and differentiate between compliant state-issued identity credentials versus less reliable proofs of identity when admitting people to secure federal facilities or, beginning in 2016, to board airlines.
“Taking another step toward a key recommendation of the 9/11 Commission … Every state has a more secure driver’s license today than they did before the passage of the act,” DHS said. Currently, DHS has determined that forty-one states and territories are either fully compliant with the REAL ID standards or have made sufficient progress to qualify for an extension. States have already successfully implemented more than 70 percent of the standards, demonstrating the achievability of the law.”