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Is a universal digital Driving Licence around the corner?

Lady with phone

The answer is YES. The implementation of the upcoming ISO 18013-5 compliant mDL, will ensure both global interoperability while supporting data privacy and combatting fraud at the same time.

We know that identification is going digital. Apart from being a useful alternative/complement to physical IDs, Mobile Driving Licences (mDLs) or Mobile IDs (mIDs) will contribute effectively to combatting fraud as well as establishing the foundation for a wide array of in-person and online digital services. However, the widespread of mIDs is dependent on secure verification capabilities and the adoption of standards such as ISO 18013-5 that make mIDs usable everywhere.

About the ISO 18013

Scytáles is a driving force in this standardization work, representing Sweden (SIS) as an expert through the Standardization Body and Task Force 14 on mDL within ISO/IEC JTC1/SC17/WG10.

ISO/IEC 18013 establishes guidelines for the design format and data content of an ISO-compliant driving licence (IDL) with regard to human-readable features (ISO/IEC 18013-1), ISO machine-readable technologies (ISO/IEC 18013-2), access control, authentication and integrity validation (ISO/IEC 18013-3), and associated test methods (ISO/IEC 18013-4). It creates a common basis for general use and mutual recognition of the IDL without impeding individual countries/states in applying their privacy rules and national/community/regional motor vehicle authorities in taking care of their specific needs.

Global interoperability, enforced by the ISO 18013-5, is one of the key factors in opting for and achieving a secure and functioning mDL ecosystem.

Fully compliant solutions are already developed

Scytáles ISO mDL/mID and validation products ensure full interoperability and are passing the various ISO 18013-5 tests.

Since Scytáles is a true pioneer in the implementation of the ISO 18013-5, our ISO mDL/mID is already fully compliant with the standard. As forerunners, besides supporting both online and offline scenarios, our iPhone and Android solutions also have NFC, QR, Bluetooth, Wifi Aware and Barcode readers technology thoroughly functional. We also support all the above combinations, i.e. iPhone to Android and vice versa and on all different interfaces/technologies, as shown in the following table.

Scytáles ISO 18013-5 Compliance Table
Scytáles ISO 18013-5 Compliance Table

Furthermore, with an ISO-compliant solution, it is possible to share and validate the information of an mDL stored on a secure smart device even when there is no data connection. This technology is also already developed into all Scytáles’ ISO-compliant products.

We know that an mDL/mID offer a convenient availability of your identity without requiring access to a physical credential. But can it support data privacy? The answer is YES! The mDL/mID holder has both:

  • Controlled access to their identity information and protection against unauthorized use, supported by capabilities of the smart device platform (e.g., PIN, biometrics);

As well as:

  • Selective information sharing, where only the attributes required for a transaction are shared, rather than all DL attributes (e.g., a bar employee verifying age does not also find out the Holder’s name or address).

Scytáles role on the ISO 18013-5

Scytáles is a proud frontrunner in the ISO international standardization work that is under development— ISO/IEC 18013-5, “Personal Identification – ISO-Compliant Driving Licence – Part 5:  Mobile Driving Licence Application”. We represent Sweden and have been successfully participating in all ISO 18013-5 Interoperability Tests, namely at Brisbane, Australia, 12-14 November 2019, Nebraska, USA, 18-20 August 2019 and Japan, 7-11 October 2018, and we are preparing to participate in the forthcoming tests in the Netherlands, on May 2020.


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