SALT LAKE CITY — Utahns who have renewed their driver's license in the past week will notice something different about the card they receive in the mail.
In an effort to revamp fraud protection throughout the state, the Utah Department of Public Safety's Driver License Division is now issuing newly designed drivers' licenses and identification cards with enhanced security. The cards will be phased in to replace the old design over the next five years.
Security features with the new cards are expected to improve fraud prevention and protection against counterfeiting and/or alteration. Security features include laser perforation, laser engraved ghost images and 1-D and 2-D bar codes to ward off fraudulent users.
The Driver License Division is constantly seeking to "improve the way (Utahns') identity and personal information is protected," according to a news release.
A beehive graphic will be embedded into the card stock of each driver's license. The validity of the new card can now be verified by simply holding the card up to the light.
The bar codes for new drivers' licenses contain demographic data and an identification number that's unique to each cardholder, the release said.
Temporary licenses have also been tweaked a bit to improve security. They are now printed on security paper, which will show “void” if copied. The colors in the background have been altered, and a graphic of the Delicate Arch from Arches National Park is featured at the top of the temporary license.
As Utahns renew their drivers' licenses over the next five years, the new cards will replace the old cards. The new cards comply with American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators specifications.
Utahns can plan to receive their new or renewed drivers' licenses about six to eight weeks after submitting an application.
When asked about the changes to the drivers' licences, Utah Department of Public Safety spokeswoman Marissa Villaseñor declined to comment pending a public announcement of the new design Monday.
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