security - Datacard
Threat Analysis
Design Principles and Guidelines
for Secure DL/ID Cards (SCDP)
August 2014
2014 © Copyright All Rights Reserved
American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators
Executive Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2
Scope . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3
Terms and Definitions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4
Process . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5
Knowing the Stakeholders . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .6
Internal Consultations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10
Threat Analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15
Manufacture . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .17
Training and Communication . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .19
Performance Monitoring . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .21
Final Thought . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .23
Annex A (informative) Glossary of Features . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .24
Annex B (informative) Conformity Assessment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .31
Annex C (informative) Main Threats to the Security of a DL/ID . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .32
Bibliography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .36
Executive Summary
Imagine investing time, money, energy, and resources into a new secure document and then realizing that you did
not get out of it what you had hoped to. This is one of the challenges that face issuing authorities when it comes
to designing a new driver license or identification card. The reality is that it is possible to be in compliance with
the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators’ (AAMVA’s) Driver License/Identification (DL/ID)
card design standard (CDS) and yet still not achieve an optimal outcome in the effectiveness of your card’s design.
This Secure Card Design Principles (SCDP) whitepaper is intended to lay out a set of principles, guidelines, and
practices that can maximize the probability of developing and maintaining a DL/ID that will be resistant to
compromise. Where the CDS provides the “building blocks” for designing a secure DL/ID card, this SCDP
further describes a process for how to use those “blocks.” There are many considerations to keep in mind beyond
just the physical document and the particular security features (see Annex A) that it may contain.
Understanding the landscape with regards to your stakeholders is critically important to ultimately having a secure
document. Assessing their needs and understanding the stakeholders’ relationship to the issuing authority (IA)
becomes a very necessary first step in the process. Organizing and conducting internal consultations is also
important in helping you to identify the vision and goals and to identify existing issues with your current
generation document that is in circulation.
Manufacturing idiosyncrasies are also a very key area to address. The roles that quality, security, durability, and
cost all play can make or break your secure document’s success. Training and communication are also something
that must be intentional and strategic; a commitment to both continuous and regular training must be made by
the IA so that people understand what is being done with the security of the cards.
Performance monitoring is also important. Knowing how well your particular card holds up helps to inform you
as to what changes you may want to make to your next-generation design. Coordination with fraud investigation
is another valuable source of information about what works and what does not.
The following is a product of a special ad hoc group that was organized through AAMVA’s Card Design Standard
Committee. Special thanks go to our industry partners at 3M, Canadian Bank Note Company, Datacard Group,
DeLaRue, Gemalto, Giesecke & Devrient, MorphoTrust USA, and Valid USA.
The primary audiences for this paper are the issuing authorities (IAs) in the United States and Canada. The
primary application is for cards, although the principles can be applied to other documents as well. Although
following the CDS to the letter (e.g., by including the required number and type of security elements) cannot
completely guarantee that a card will not be successfully attacked, the chances of better protection go up
significantly. The goal of the SCDP is to build on the CDS by providing additional guidelines for designing a
secure card. Issuing authorities should consider the following when designing a secure document (much of the
focus of this paper will be on cards).
This document may be freely distributed.
Terms and Definitions
central issuance
driver license/identification [card]
issuing authority, a governmentally authorized agent or organization that
issues a DL/ID card
law enforcement
Level 1 (first-line inspection)
examination without tools or aids that involves easily identifiable visual or
tactile features for rapid inspection at point of usage
Level 2 (second-line inspection) examination that requires the use of a tool or instrument (e.g., ultraviolet
[UV] light, magnifying glass, or scanner)
Level 3 (third-line inspection)
examination done at a forensic level
over the counter (instant issuance)
security during personalization
Identification of Threats
(also described in Annex C of this document and the DL/ID standard)
The numbers above correspond to threats that are defined in the CDS, which can be found in Annex C.
The purpose of this document is to improve the security of the physical license by
addressing the threats shown in red above. The threats shown in blue are outside the scope of the SCDP.
Knowing the Stakeholders
One of the most critical tasks involved in designing a DL/ID card is understanding the potential uses of the card.
Failure to identify all associated “stakeholders” before the design phase of the project can result in project delays or
shortened card lifespan. After a list of stakeholders has been compiled, their needs must be assessed and addressed
if deemed appropriate for the intent of the DL/ID card. Many stakeholders’ needs are compatible. Many times
there are stakeholders on both sides of the equation (those that issue and those that depend on what is issued): a
design feature that benefits one entity may negatively impact another. Everyone’s needs should be considered to
the extent they can. In summary, an IA should consult all stakeholders but still remains responsible for compiling
the ultimate set of requirements addressing all stakeholders’ needs.
A common method of identifying stakeholders and assessing their needs is to first divide them into groups based
on the nature of their needs or their relationship to the data contained on or in the card.
Core stakeholders are entities who will be directly impacted the most, either positively or negatively, by the card
design. The most obvious are the IA and law enforcement (LE).
IA: The quality, durability, and security of the license will impact directly the IA and the IA’s broader
governmental organization. The license design can, to a degree, be considered to reflect the brand of the IA.
LE: During a traffic stop, an officer must be able to efficiently and effectively extract specific information
from a card visually or electronically. Failure to do so has at the very least a negative impact downstream
for that stakeholder’s interaction with the card and could cost the person his or her life because of an
unnecessary distraction.
Identify a unique individual. Are the font type and size adequate for adverse conditions? Does it
adhere to industry standards for data location and identifiers? Are data encoded to a barcode or
magnetic strip?
Identify the person’s current authority to operate a specific class of vehicle
Identify any provisions for their operation (restrictions and endorsements)
Organ donor status
Additional stakeholders are entities indirectly affected, either positively or negatively, by the card design. An
example is traffic courts that must establish the relationship between a unique identity record and an accident or
citation provided by an LE officer.
Why is it necessary for the IA to identify stakeholders and assess their needs? Doing so has a number of important
It results in more and varied ideas than would be the case if the design were conducted in the bubble of a
single agency with like-minded people.
It provides an opportunity for all stakeholders to provide input to the design process. As such, these
stakeholders are more likely to support and champion the final product. This will strengthen the IA’s
position if there is opposition to the card design. Having the stakeholders on board makes a significant
It increases the credibility of your agency. Involving and assessing the needs of stakeholders establishes
your organization as concerned, fair, and transparent.
Additional stakeholders (and their needs) may include:
Medical first responders (emergency medical technicians and firefighters)
Donor status, travel, and transportation (Transportation Security Administration, car rental)
Identify a unique individual
Easily identifiable level 1 security features
Employers (I–9 process)
Identify a unique individual
Financial entities (banks, paycheck loans, retail credit)
Date of birth of the card holder
Unique card format age designation
Easily identifiable level 1 security features
Military veteran Indicator
Miscellaneous businesses, insurance
Identify a unique individual
Identifiable level 1 and 2 security features and compliance indicators
Identify the person’s current authority to operate a specific class of vehicle
Retailers, identity- or age-based, and general retailers (liquor, tobacco, pharmacies, firearms, and
Identify a unique individual: Is the font type and size adequate for adverse conditions? Does it adhere
to industry standards for data location and identifiers?
Medical conditions identified on or in the card?
Identify a unique individual
Clear data designations to ease data entry
Government Agencies (Social Security Administration, Family Services, courts)
Identify a unique individual
Clear data designations to ease data entry
Easily identifiable level 1 security features
Knowing the Stakeholders
Voting and voter registration
Public and private schools and daycare
Identify a unique individual
Identify a unique individual
Identify a unique individual
Clear data designations to ease data entry
Organ donor status
Attractive appearance that bears the state’s “brand” or identity
Knowledge that the card security aligns with industry best practices
After the stakeholder list has been compiled, an assessment of their needs must be completed. These needs can be
unique or shared, but commonly the needs of the key primary stakeholders will fulfill those of the secondary
stakeholders. The initial assessment can either begin with face-to-face stakeholder meetings representing common
groups or by providing them with a common set of questions designed to identify their needs with face-to-face
discussions following at a later date.
Potential questions could include:
For what do you use a state-issued driver license or photo identification card in your business or daily
Does the current DL/ID card address those needs?
What changes in the DL/ID card would better fulfill your needs?
When conducting a face-to-face stakeholder meeting (focus group), it is critical not to assume that they actually
know what data and features are on the DL/ID card even if they interact with the card on a regular basis.
Providing card samples, card data, and security feature call-out documents will enhance their education and many
times help them realize that their needs have already been met. Explaining the reasoning behind industry card
standards and best practices as well as state and federal required card features and formats will remove much of the
mystique. Examples could include the “dusty rose” header coloring or overlapping features that partially obscure
data they want to see or font size that is constrained by the necessary minimum number of characters that the card
must be capable of handling. Education builds acceptance or at least understanding.
Because it is common for agencies to keep card designs somewhat consistent over time, it is most likely that these
discussions will expose potential design compromises that result in a superior product by modifying or eliminating
a low-value data, security, or appearance feature.
LE at all levels must be able to rely on government-issued identification documents and know that the bearer of
such a document is who he or she claims to be. Obtaining fraudulent identification documents presents an
Knowing the Stakeholders
opportunity for criminals or terrorists to board airplanes, rent cars, open bank accounts, steal identities, or
conduct other criminal activities without being detected. Because LE officials at all levels depend on secure
documents to safely and effectively perform their mission, their input should be of primary concern and sought by
those attempting to create secure documents. This should be a collaborative and ongoing effort between document
administrators and federal, state, and local LE.
LE’s primary mission is public safety, and they pursue this mission by focusing on criminal investigation and crime
prevention. Secure documents play a significant role in both. Large or small, all criminal enterprises attempt to
hide their activities from LE. One prevalent way is the use of fraudulent documents to conceal identity or
activities. Some examples of these activities are:
Financial crime or fraud
Identity theft
Illegal immigration
Because each level of LE has different roles, responsibilities, and needs when handling secure documents, all levels
of LE need to be included in this collaborative effort. Even within a single LE agency or department, there are
different missions, needs, and uses of secure documents and their security features. The use of security features by
LE officials is based on three factors: time, training (feature awareness), and equipment.
LE at all levels, but in particular, those tasked with patrolling the roadways and responding to criminal activity,
must quickly assess the document in less than ideal conditions, with limited time, training, and equipment. To do
this, they depend primarily on level 1 security features as they come into daily contact with secure documents at
traffic stops and crime scenes. In these situations, rarely will the official look beyond level 1 security features. This
makes features that are quickly and easily identifiable by touch or the unaided eye most beneficial.
On the other hand, LE agencies or officials with investigative, administrative, or security emphases will generally
have more time, training, and equipment to use level 1; level 2; and on occasion, level 3 security features.
For example, an FBI taskforce conducting a large investigation will have the time, expertise, and equipment to
take advantage of level 1, 2, and 3 security features. Conversely, a patrol officer making a traffic stop in adverse
conditions may have only moments to determine whether the document he or she is holding is fraudulent and the
vehicle operator is wanted, posing an immediate threat. In this situation, clear and easily identifiable level 1
features are critical.
It is a tendency to emphasize the role of level 2 or 3 features because they are often what large-scale or “serious”
criminal investigations rely on when secure documents are a part of the investigation. Although level 2 and 3
features are critical for these situations and others, they are of limited value in many daily interactions between LE
and secure documents. In these interactions, LE is likely to depend on level 1 security features the most.
Because of these factors, it is critical to seek input from a broad spectrum of LE officials when designing secure
documents. Focusing on only one level of LE will provide document administrators with a skewed vision of LE
needs when creating secure documents.
Knowing the Stakeholders
Internal Consultations
Consult technology experts on new developments. It is vital for anyone designing a secure card to have an
understanding of current technologies, which can usually be obtained from the vendor community and the
AAMVA community, especially jurisdictions that have undergone a request for proposal (RFP) recently.
In this exercise, the people charged with developing the DL/ID need to have a good grasp on what the
technologies are really about that exist today and what threats they are designed to counteract. Experts within the
vendor community as well as the LE community, DHS, and CBSA laboratories are good sources of information.
The very people who actually develop new materials, processes, and security features are an excellent source
because these technical professionals are the people who must know what exists today and what new things are on
the drawing boards in order to do their jobs on a routine basis.
AAMVA members who have designed RFPs and designed new DL/IDs within the past 2 years are also good
sources because they have paved the way in their own states, already canvassing the technical community.
Additionally, jurisdictions with upcoming RFPs or active RFPs get considerable attention and all the new
technology (materials, manufacturing equipment) is usually rolled out to this audience. Getting another state’s
input on feature sets and card materials or designs allows another set of eyes to examine technology. Conduct
internal requirements gathering for the new card design. Requirements gathering is integral to the success of any
project. This process must be detailed and thorough to adequately get the desired end product. Vendors will make
proposals on the specifics of the RFP. Do not make assumptions that the vendor will know what you are trying to
accomplish. Requirements gathering should include a team of individuals representing the issuing agency along
with technical experts on secure cards. Involve as many stakeholders as possible. Ensure that they are well educated
as to level 1 features (how to detect, preserve, and report). Use multiple media (e.g., video, websites, tutorials) to
educate stakeholders and make use of liaison opportunities (interministerial, interagency).
Start from the top down by first identifying management’s vision and goals for the new document.
Involve all internal stakeholders in the dialogue. Gather requirement from all departments that may have
an impact on the card design, including design, security, data content, data layout, document readability,
configuration of issuance sites (central, hybrid, over the counter [OTC]), and card lifetime
Design considerations checklist
Purpose of document: Which services are enabled?
Verification: Who will verify the license? Expertise, readers, training?
Lifetime: storage, use, frequency, environment, validity period?
Security assessment: value, threats, new technologies, best practices
Preferred issuance configuration: central issuance (CI), OTC, hybrid?
Financial: capital budgets, ongoing budgets, sponsorship or funding, price of license
Branding: preferred colors, crests, logos, text
❑ Legal: state or federal mandates
❑ Interoperability: standards, legacy systems, cross-border agreements
Develop a document summarizing all internal requirements.
Consult with industry on latest technology developments and trends.
Request updates through RFI (Request for Information).
Consult with other government departments, agencies, or laboratories on latest developments. (AAMVA
could assist in providing information.)
Conduct case studies involving similar documents. Consult with other government bodies issuing the
same or similar document and get their experience and lessons learned.
Design (should still allow IAs to not all come up with the same solution)
Levels 2 and 3 features are critical to success for further forensic and expert analysis. However, too heavy a reliance
on levels 2 and 3 can create a false sense of security if front-line staff are not equipped or trained to fully
authenticate those features (e.g., seeing UV ink or holograms can create a false positive and in fact being readily
Simplicity can provide for more cost-effective production.
Good technology + Poor design = Poor security
Level 1 is most critical. However, do not rely on
only one feature; it is also important to implement
level 1 at multiple layers and technologies.
Required functional performance (different for different stakeholders)
Quality, security, durability, and cost are key characteristics of driver licenses and should be considered when
designing the document.
Quality: A high-quality license will be consistent in appearance and closely match all other licenses issued in the
same ID program. The security features—in particular, the primary portrait—will be crisp and clearly defined to
allow easy authentication. Machine-readable features, such as chips, optically readable characters (OCR), and
barcodes, will read consistently and accurately. Laminates will have the necessary optical clarity. Overall, a highquality driver license will look and feel like one.
Security: The security of an ID is a measure of how well it resists deliberate attack. Document attack is either by
simulation to produce a counterfeit or by tamper in an attempt to alter the information within the ID. The
security of the document depends on how difficult it is to simulate or tamper with and also how easily the genuine
document may be verified as being genuine. Simple is good; this is basic common sense for an overall effective
design. One must adhere to this principle if two basic functions are to be attained: (1) ease of authentication and
(2) automatic and widespread recognition of the credential as not only secure but also representative of a particular
Internal Consultations
Simplicity or simpler to verify translates to less training, less costs, and less confusion. The simplest features can be
described in terms of an action and a predicted outcome, for example, “Tilt the card away from you and look for
the feature to change from X to Y.” A test of simplicity: consider if the feature could be described by phone. Ease:
think of field environment and verification conditions; what would make it easy to verify a document? For
example, in low-light conditions, a tactile feature can be useful and is often cited by LE as valuable.
For ease of authentication, one must use a combination of level 1 features in combination with the card design
layout to effect a visually uncomplicated, “simple,” and secure design. The accumulation of too many obvious
features can cause confusion in authenticating the credential. A good principle to consider is the selection of one
or two very obvious level 1 features that are backed up by both other level 1 and level 2 features. Focusing the
design around one or two features allows the designer to build the card design with these as the foundation. All
threats need to be addressed using a variety of features yet without compromising the visually uncomplicated
Form follows function. Consequently, automatic and widespread recognition will follow from a well-designed,
secure card.
As stated earlier, it is imperative that level 1 features are quickly and easily validated (e.g., raised lettering, insets,
and translucent features). Having too heavy a reliance on level 2/3 features will not enable front-line analyzers to
detect fraudulent documents.
A review of the CDS Annex B is imperative in understanding which features can operate as level 1, 2, or 3 security
Durability: The durability of a DL/ID defines its resistance to change. A document is exposed to a variety of
environmental hazards during its life, such as light, flex, and extremes of temperature and humidity. It may also be
subjected to accidental attack (e.g., laundry) or deliberate misuse, such as using a card for something other than
intended (e.g., scraping ice off a windshield). An ID with high durability will survive the required validity period
without significant visual change and without compromise to its performance.
Cost: The cost of the document refers to the cost to produce it. This will include the fixed and variable costs
associated with enrolment, manufacture, personalization, issuance, shipping, and the many administrative
functions necessary to manage and secure these functions.
The properties of QSDC—quality, security, durability, and cost— which are all important, may be given different
priorities by the various stakeholders. For example, issuers of licenses may rate cost as the most important criteria.
Durability will also be important to issuers because reissuing too many licenses can impact budgets. Document
examiners, however, will probably want the best security features that they can get, with little consideration of cost
or budgets. A citizen who owns the license wants it to look good, and quality is probably the most important
consideration, together with the cost to him or her (the lower the better).
Measurement of these criteria can be difficult, and thus the setting of metrics for the required functional
performance can be challenging.
The quality of an image or indeed of the whole license is somewhat subjective.
Internal Consultations
Durability measurement presents different challenges because there are many lists of test methods but which
methods to use and how to interpret them. The extrapolation of the result of some accelerated laboratory tests to
predict longevity for a 10-year license is a risk. (Reference the Durability Annex E in the CDS.)
The principles of license security are well proven and described elsewhere in this document, but ranking or scoring
features is also very subjective.
Cost, of course, can be specified precisely, although breaking down the overall cost of a license can be difficult
because so many factors are involved. Additionally, there is a potential cost to “getting it wrong”—a weak design
lacking the upfront investment can yield a much higher overall cost because additional measures are then required
to redo design(s).
Security during personalization (SDP) is a way to add additional security to a license. SDP uses a security feature
(or features) to render, often redundantly, variable personal information. For example, a person’s portrait image is
repeated using a different printing technology, or the date of birth is repeated using tactile lettering. These features
are powerful because they deliver key aspects of effective security features, for example:
Defend against counterfeiting
Defend against alteration
Easy to verify with confidence
Typically level 1 overt features
Encourage verification of personal data
Reduce the value, to the criminal, of stolen or recycled components
The SDP feature is created by bringing together, at a late stage in the manufacturing chain, specialized
engineering, restricted components, and expert know-how. This combination delivers an effect that presents
personal information in a way that is different from that possible with commonly available commercial
equipment, thus defending against criminal attack by counterfeiting and alteration.
Layer, interlock, overlap, and integrate features to maximize their effectiveness—three features alone are nowhere
near as strong as three features that are linked together in chain-like fashion. A fraudster who sees multiple features
or variable data elements linked and layered together sees a strong line of protection and in most instances will not
even attempt to attack. This is particularly true when variable data elements are attached to (linked) or layered
with security features. An example of this is the inclusion of personal data within a “perforated” feature allowing
one to see a pattern or image with data through the card. A counterfeiter has to make every single card different
from the last one, which is time consuming and prone to error. To make things worse for the counterfeiter, one
could layer this type feature with another one, for example, an obvious preprinted feature, making it necessary to
connect any counterfeited feature to another one he or she has to create. When this happens numerous times, it is
a very high wall for the counterfeiter to climb, and invariably this means the document will not be counterfeited.
Layering materials with various layers of printing has application of features at various manufacturing stages and
depth in the document. It makes a document more complex and more difficult to counterfeit.
Internal Consultations
Interlocking or overlapping: Materials, data or features that are directly interlinked prevent from attacking one
element, component, or layer without affecting the other(s).
Integration: Materials, data, or features that are securely integrated into the document are less susceptible to being
separated from the document and reused for fraudulent purposes.
Designate a card or document design team to represent internal or external stakeholders
in the design process.
Identify representatives from various internal departments to be part of the card design team.
Include in the team external stakeholders with interests in how the document looks, functions,
reads, and so on.
Internal Consultations
Threat Analysis
Design to address existing and potential threats. A key step in designing a secure credential is to define the threats
that your existing credential faces today. This is vital in that it defines the starting point. What are fraudsters
focusing on in today’s card? How are they making their counterfeits? Where are they passing the counterfeits, and
for what purposes? The retail community and LE community within the state or jurisdiction are the places to find
these answers. One might also contact the local FBI or RCMP offices to understand the level of identity theft in
the area, one of the biggest and growing threats across the country. A subsequent step is in getting a solid
understanding of why the current card does not stop these threats. Enlisting the aid of industry experts in attack
scenarios is extremely helpful in rounding out the analysis of the current situation—putting the stake in the
ground representing where you are today.
Another step is in deciding what threats might be witnessed across your jurisdiction in the coming five plus years
(or whatever the contract life is for the card). To do this, a canvassing of the surrounding jurisdictions’ current
counterfeit threats and how they have evolved is quite useful. What is happening in the neighbor states is often a
harbinger of things to come. Contact with experts throughout the country will serve to round out the analysis of
what is coming because many keep tabs on counterfeiters as they occupy “secret” internet chat rooms; monitoring
this activity often tells of what they are working on to be able to meet the “new” credential challenges.
The design not only has to stop current threats, but it also must put in
place protections from those threats to come.
Design lifetime = The period of time that a particular security design
has to resist fraudulent attack
Potential design lifetime =
Card lifetime + Program lifetime
(including program implementation time)
Card lifetime = The validity period of the license, typically 5, 7, 8, or
10 years
Program lifetime = The period of time over which particular security design is issued
For example, the design lifetime for a 7-year card from a 10-year program is 7 + 10 = 17 years.
Identify and analyze collected data on existing threats and fraud, anticipate future threats, and integrate security
features targeting specific threats and methods of attacks.
Analyze historic counterfeit and falsified cards (collected from verification and forensic authorities), as well as
technology developments and integrate features addressing potential threats. The idea is to stay one step ahead of
the fraud.
Design with verification in mind: level 1, simplicity, ease
How will the document be verified in the field? Include features matching field verification practices.
Design with manufacturability in mind (design only what can be reliably and consistently manufactured). To
ensure a secure card, it must be manufactured consistently and at a high-quality level. Any document that suffers
from inconsistency, whether it is in quality of features or quality of variable information, including photos, is easily
counterfeited. To a fraudster, a card that exhibits variability in the properties of a feature (e.g., various shades of
blue instead of the same shade of blue every time) is an easy target. If the manufacturing process exhibits excessive
variability, document reviewers are forced to accept a wide variety of cards and may stop authenticating a feature.
To facilitate authentication, the card design should specify tolerances for all features. Tolerances include field
positions, color variations, and so on. Vendors should be monitored for compliance with tolerances throughout
the program life.
Every manufacturing process has variation. The document should be designed in a way that this variability is
minimized. On the other hand, not everything that can be “designed” can be manufactured; designs should take
manufacturing capabilities into account.
The ideal document uses materials, features, and technologies that are not easily
accessible to the general public. The material from which the card is made should
. . . the fraudster tends to imitate
not be readily available in the general public domain. There are materials that are
the outcome, not the process.
claimed to be unavailable that are, in fact, readily available. Therefore, claims
made by the manufacturers need to be reviewed by independent experts who are
not associated with those manufacturers. Features that are currently under counterfeit attack in other jurisdictions
should also be reviewed. For example, the use of holographic overlays offers a false sense of security. These are a
mainstay of Chinese counterfeiters and are often easily found on an internet search. Therefore, one cannot effect a
secure design if this is at the center of the credential’s security. DHS (ICE, USSS), CBSA, FBI, and AAMVA are
good sources of information. The basic tenet here is simple: if the genuine material or feature is available to the
fraudster, then it will be used by the fraudster.
Widely available materials and features make the document less secure and more vulnerable, and they can be
accessible to fraudsters; however, using only genuine components and materials whose availability is restricted is
just one important defense because criminals often do not use the same materials or processes as are used for the
genuine license. It is critical to remember that the fraudster tends to imitate the outcome, not the process. So,
the genuine features need to resist simulation and alteration by criminals using commonly available materials and
processes that give a similar visual result. As a minimum, limited availability know-how, materials, and
technologies should be involved in the design and manufacturing of a secure document.
Threat Analysis
Durability is important. Cards that are not durable or become “worn out” make for easier targets. Secure
manufacturing standards exist (ANSI NASPO, ICAO Secure Issuance Guidelines) that cover both vendor
manufacturing and IA issuance. Durability tests should be conducted to provide for an objective third-party
analysis of card lifespan and weaknesses (see Annex E in the AAMVA Card Design Standard).
It is also very important to understand the nuances accompanying the type of issuance to be used—instant (OTC)
versus centralized (CI).
Some comparisons can be related to the QSDC methodology introduced earlier.
Quality: The close similarity between all genuine documents is key to security. Every machine
exhibits variability, and variability is always additive. So, the most consistent documents are
produced using fewer machines and from a single site.
Security: In addition to the “close match output” described earlier, the security of the document
also relies on the security (resistance to theft) of its components. These are more easily protected and
controlled when issued from a single site. They are also less likely to be intercepted in transit when
moved to or from a single site. A further CI security benefit is that larger machines tend to offer
more opportunity to add the SDP features described earlier. Larger secure sites may also have better
security, so the chances of theft (either internal or through a break-in) are also decreased.
Durability: The durability of a document depends to a degree on the precise control of
personalization processes, particularly if the document is laminated. There is more control and less
chance of out-of-spec lamination in a CI site with fewer machines.
Cost: Secure document manufacture is no different from any other process; that is, there are
economies of scale. A single large site is almost always less expensive to operate than two or more
smaller sites. That said, one must weigh the benefits described earlier of a CI model with those of
instant issuance. In instant issuance, if one site goes down, other sites are usually available, although
they may be some distance away.
Ensure preproduction proofing and approvals. These include written specifications and could also include
preproduction samples. Approved specifications and retained samples may be used as references against which the
final product can be compared for the life of the contract. Also ensure compliance of the design to the CDS by
submitting preproduction samples to the AAMVA Courtesy Verification Program (CVP). Card durability should
be tested after the first preproduction run, well before the document is issued to the general public. Ideally, the
tested document is composed entirely of actual components (as opposed to similar materials) and manufactured
using the same machinery and processes as will be used in production to provide the most valid assessment of
durability and integrity before launch. These test results should be used as baselines for tests conducted later
during the program.
Develop quality and consistency standards or guidelines
Ensure continued compliance of the design and print quality to the CDS by, for example,
submitting production samples to the AAMVA CVP (see Annex B)
Training and Communication
Given geographic challenges (populace spread out over large expanses) and fiscal constraints, it is imperative that
jurisdictions develop tools that use evolving technologies such as video conferencing with staff and stakeholders,
online tools, and tutorials (document samples—authentic and counterfeit). A commitment to continuous and
regular training must be made. Failure to do so will provide for dilution of security. Also, a well-maintained email
list allows for the quick dissemination of alerts and details about document compromise.
Counterfeiting Implications include:
Identity theft leads to financial risk for individuals (unwanted debt), jurisdictions (expensive
investigations and prosecutions), and insurers (fraudulent claims and improperly qualified drivers
involved in crashes).
Identity theft can lead to illegal activity (organized crime, terrorism).
Identity theft can provide for infraction or license loss implications.
Too often, security features are simply unknown to the LE officials or the feature requires equipment not readily
available to most LE officials. For the secure documents to be effective and useful to LE, level 1 and select level 2
security features need to be known and usable by all LE officials. This can only be achieved through the
development of coordinated and training programs designed to make LE aware of these features.
This can best be accomplished through ongoing collaborative efforts among document administrators, LE
associations, and state criminal justice regulatory agencies. All states have a criminal justice or LE regulatory entity
that maintains training certifications and sets standards for initial and ongoing in-service training for sworn LE.
These organizations, as well as federal equivalents and LE associations such as the IACP, are essential to ensure all
LE receive the necessary training.
In the United States and Canada, the DL/ID card is the main identity credential that most of us rely on to prove
who we are. No airline, travel agency, bank, mutual fund company, mortgage company, or even bar, restaurant, or
hotel will take anything less than your DL. Therefore, what we are really talking about is the person’s identity
represented by this secure credential. If you are without it, there is little you can do in these countries. If it is
compromised, you have a significant problem. Counterfeit cards may be used to become someone else, yielding
access to their credit and bank accounts. This is a huge problem that has caused billions of dollars in damage to
individuals across these countries.
Of course, there are other uses of counterfeit DL/IDs, including underage drinking and tobacco use and credit
card abuse and scams, and their use in many criminal enterprises is well documented.
Many illegal aliens buy high-quality counterfeits so they may establish an identity in this country illegally. After
they have entered into the actual jurisdiction’s system, they have established themselves fraudulently into the
country’s identity system of choice.
Develop various levels of information to be released to various target audiences, for example, level 1
(selected), general public; levels 1 and 2, verification authorities and stakeholders (various levels); and level
3, strictly “forensic and as per need basis.”
Maintain a document design version control and associated communication programs.
Every version of the document in the field should have a number and an associated communication program;
version control ensures that the appropriate communication material is linked to the respective document version.
For example, when a new feature is introduced, associated documentation under the same version number is
distributed in the field.
Conduct regular training session with target audiences. Develop effective online training packages.
Training and Communication
Performance Monitoring
This is a very important aspect that must be kept in mind throughout the lifecycle of the DL/ID. As the cards are
in circulation, periodic testing to see how they (a specific design) are holding up (durability wise) provides valuable
data; this potentially relates to both the physical substrate or features of the card and functioning (machine
readable or detectable aspects). Coordination with fraud investigation also becomes another good source of data
on what about the cards is working and not working.
Here are some tasks that should be undertaken:
Establish a process to collect document performance data and define a repository to store performance data. A
specific place and method to store the document performance data in the field should be agreed upon. This should
be communicated to all authorities that are involved in document verification and handling.
AAMVA plays a critical role here, identifying the need for all jurisdictions to report both successes (design features,
manufacturing or testing breakthroughs and failures [best practices]).
The Association can further its efforts of maintaining a compendium of all member jurisdictions’ inventory and a
secure listing of security features.
Fraud investigation (what to do when you discover it)
Ensure continued compliance of the design and print quality to the CDS by, for example, submitting
production samples to the AAMVA CVP.
Stimulate public and stakeholder feedback and monitoring for fraud (publications, bulletins on what to
look for, how to assess fraud, and what actions to take in case of fraud).
Encourage stakeholders to notify the jurisdiction of any fraud or fraud attempts and the results of any
fraud investigations.
Monitor national and international fraud development (stay abreast of fraud development nationally and
internationally even it did not show up in your jurisdiction—it’s only time before it does—fraud does not
have borders).
When developing an RFP for a new contract period, include provisions that mandate an annual review of not only
material and feature development.
A written summary of adherence to standards in place at the time, counterfeit threats being experienced at the
time, and a review of the document’s ability to withstand attack is a huge asset for the jurisdiction. This can also
serve as a means to provide an annual review of the manufacturer’s consistency of manufacture and quality levels
being delivered.
Technology evolves and is used by license designers and criminals alike. Criminals attack the weakest elements of a
system, and designs become increasingly vulnerable with the passage of time. Licenses become increasingly
vulnerable to attack if they do not take advantage of new technologies as they emerge. This effect is magnified as
the validity period increases. For example, a license valid for 10 years issued over the life of a 10-year contract
could be using technology that is 20 years old to defend against criminals with access to state-of-the-art current
technologies. The problem is even worse when the time required to design the license is added.
One approach to defending against this problem is to introduce regular technology upgrades—for example, every
5 years—that keep the defenses fresh. For contract periods exceeding this period, IAs may want to include refresh
options in the vendor contract.
It is not only card security that may benefit from a technology refresh. Quality, durability, and cost improvements
are also regularly achieved by introducing changes to technology and materials.
Key areas to monitor are:
Personalization technologies
Security features (physical and electronic)
New developments present new opportunities for development of new and improved documents:
Build a plan to mitigate potential problems.
Collect and evaluate document performance metrics as input for the new or next-generation document
designs (collected data on the document performance in the field identifies the areas for improvement,
changes the new document design should focus on).
Performance Monitoring
Final Thought
DL/IDs will continue to be targets of attack no matter what precautions are taken or countermeasures are put into
place. It is not a question of stopping the attempts; rather, it is about reducing the likelihood that fraud attempts
will succeed. Although we cannot hope to eliminate the threat, we can be more vigilant in our defenses and
strategies. There may be no such thing as a 100% fraud-resistant DL/ID, but the final product will be exponentially
more difficult to mimic and imitate for the fraudster if the prescription of this whitepaper is followed.
Annex A (informative)
Glossary of Features
Anti-scan pattern
A pattern usually constructed of fine lines at varying angular displacement and
embedded in the security background design. When viewed normally, the
pattern cannot be distinguished from the remainder of the background security
print but when the original is scanned or photocopied the embedded pattern
becomes visible.
Areas of different surface
Surface embossed structure with different reflectivity/roughness, e.g. matt or
Background printing
Printed graphical security design consisting of e.g. guilloche, rainbow printing,
micro text, etc. lying below or above the dynamic data.
Card blanks
A card that does not contain any of the dynamic data elements.
Card core inclusions
The opaque or translucent inner layers of a laminated card, e.g. colored or with a
modulation of opacity simulating a watermark.
Chemically Reactive
Contains a security agent that is sensitive to chemicals, i.e., polar and non-polar
solvents and bleach, commonly used to alter documents. The chemical reaction
is for the ink to run, stain, and bleed to show evidence of document tampering.
CLI/MLI (changeable/
multiple laser image)
Combination of a lens structure integrated to the surface of the document
with elements engraved or printed into a bottom layer. Resulting effect consist in
multiplexing of at least 2 images each of them being visible separately depending
of the viewing angle.
Core inclusions
A material which is included within the inner layers of the card body, such as
colored layer. One example of this is displaying a watermark effect, another
being a laser absorption layer for displaying dynamic data
An unauthorized copy or reproduction of a genuine security card made by
whatever means
Covert Device – Readable
and Storage Technology
Unique individual Near IR or IR invisible data mark, 2-dimenional encrypted
bar code, capable of storing independent information or details.
Covert variable pixel
Covert dot matrix images that are converted to visible text with a special
reader or lens
CMYK colors
The ‘process’ colors, cyan, magenta, yellow and black used in combination for
commercial color printing, normally in the form of half-tone patterns, and by
digital printing devices to approximately represent the visible color spectrum and
enable the printing of ‘color pictures’.
Deliberate error
A feature purposely made with an intentional mistake
An optical effect produced by periodic microstructures embedded into material
layer and producing decomposition of white light into rainbow continuous
spectrum that may be seen at specific viewing angles”
Digital Seal
A method of securing and validating data by electronic means using digital
signature technology. The issuing authority “signs” the information contained in
the MRT
Duplex security pattern
A design made up of an interlocking pattern of small irregular shapes, printed in
two or more colors and requiring very close register printing in order to preserve
the integrity of the pattern.
Dynamic data
Information specific to the document and the holder.
Effect pigments
See optical or non-optical effect pigments.
Embedded data
Data that is visible, encoded or concealed within a primary visual image or
Embedded thread, fiber
or planchette
Small, often fluorescent particles or platelets incorporated into a card material
at the time of manufacture that can be seen later under certain lighting
conditions. The embedded elements may have magnetic or other machinereadable properties that may be used to enhance the levels of security provided
Embossed surface pattern
A design or image formed on the surface of a DL/ID, for example during the
card lamination process.
Small, thread-like particles embedded in a substrate during manufacture and
may include an UV feature too.
Fine Line Foreground
A pattern of continuously fine lines constructed by using two or more lines
overlapping bands that repeat a lacy, web-like curve.
Fluorescent ink
Ink containing material that glows when exposed to light at a specific
wavelength (usually UV) and that, unlike phosphorescent material, ceases to
glow immediately after the illuminating light source has been removed.
Annex A
Fraudulent alteration of any part of the genuine DL/ID e.g. changes to the
dynamic data elements. (portrait, signature, biographical and all personal data).
Front to back (see through)
A design printed on both sides of a card that forms an interlocking image when
held to a light source.
Ghost Image
A lighter reproduction of the original image that appears in the same area as the
personal data such that the image appears to be in the background and the
personal data can still be read without interference
Guilloche design
A pattern of continuous fine lines, usually computer generated, and forming a
unique pattern that can only be accurately re-originated by access to the software
and parameters used in creating the original design.
Half-tone image
A method of representing images by printing, usually in the form of dots of black
and/or colored ink. Varying tones are achieved by varying the size of the printed
dots relative to the unprinted, white background area surrounding the dots.
A person who applies for and obtains a DL/ID by assuming a false name and
identity, or a person who alters his or her physical appearance to represent
himself or herself as another person for the purpose of using that other person’s
Infra-red drop-out ink
An ink which is visible when illuminated with light in the visible part of the
spectrum and which cannot be detected in the infra-red region.
Infra-red fluorescent ink
In daylight invisible ink, which can only be seen when applying light in the
infrared spectrum (630nm).
Iridescent ink
An ink that contains transparent pigments consisting of a thin film deposited on
tiny mica flakes. They cause interference with the incident light. This creates
shiny, pearl-like shimmering effects with changes in color when the angle of view
or illumination changes.
A transparent material, which may have security features such as optically
variable devices contained within it and which is designed to be securely bonded
to the DL/ID to protect the dynamic data elements and the security features
within the card structure.
Laser embossing
A process whereby a laser is used to create tactile elements on the card surface.
Laser engraving
A process whereby a laser is used to alter the card-body material to display
information. The information may consist of text, images, pictographs and
security features.
Annex A
Laser perforation
A process whereby information is created by perforating the card-body material
with a laser. The information may consist of text, images and pictographs and
appear positive when viewed in reflected light and negative when viewed against
a light source.
Latent image/data
A hidden image formed within a relief image which is composed of line
structures which vary in direction and profile resulting in the hidden image
appearing at predetermined viewing angles. A latent image / data is – subject to
the condition of the correct viewing angle – visible to the human eye without
further equipment.
Lenticular feature
Security feature in which a lens structure is integrated in the surface of the
document such as a changeable/multiple laser image (CLI/MLI).
Look through element
An area of the card designed to permit the transmission of visible light through
the card body. The light transmitting area may be transparent or comprise grey
technology (MRT)
Magnetic stripe, smart card, bar codes, OCR, optical WORM media, etc.
Verifies the authenticity of the document, the data or the person presenting the
card by the use of a reader and comparison of the stored data to other machine
or visual information
Magnetic media
Tracks unique, random patterns of magnetic media formed as a by-product
manufacture of card. The pattern is recorded at the time the card is encoded and
this pattern can later be compared to the pattern detected when the card is
Metallic ink
Ink exhibiting a metallic-like appearance.
Metameric inks
A pair of inks formulated to appear to be the same color when viewed under
specified conditions, normally daylight illumination, but which are mismatched
at other wavelengths.
Micro optical imaging
Text, line art, gray scale images and multi—reflectivity images are engineered
into optical WORM media at high resolution (over 12,000 dpi). Difficult to
simulate the printing resolution.
Micro- printed text
Very small text printed in positive and/or negative form, that may be used in
conjunction with rainbow printing and which can only be read with the aid of a
magnifying glass and not exceeding 0.3mm in height.
Multi-layer card
A card-body comprising two or more layers of material securely bonded together
to form a single structure.
Annex A
Non-optical effects pigments
Any ink containing visible or invisible pigments which is not designed to be
controlled by eye such as metallic ink, magnetic ink, conductive ink, bleeding
ink or which is not showing any predictable behavior upon wavelength
Non-standard type fonts
Type fonts that are of restricted availability.
Optical effect pigment
Visible or invisible pigments incorporated in an ink which is designed to be
controlled by eye, such as optically variable ink also called color shifting inks, or
iridescent inks.
Optical media fingerprinting
Tracks unique, random patterns of optic media (e.g., fibers) on card. The pattern
is recorded at the time the card is encoded and this pattern can later be
compared to the pattern detected when the card is scanned.
Optically variable element
An element whose appearance in color and/or design changes dependent upon
the angle of viewing or illumination, such as holograms or optical diffractive
Optically Variable Ink
Printing ink containing optically variable pigments which show variations in
color depending on the angle of observation or lighting. Optically variable inks
can be either opaque or transparent and include iridescent inks and metameric
An ultra-thin film or protective coating that may be applied to the surface of a
DL/ID in place of a laminate and which may contain optically variable
The process by which the dynamic data elements (portrait, signature,
biographical and all personal data) are applied to the DL/ID.
Personalized tactile element
A surface element giving a distinctive ‘feel’ to the DL/ID, such as laser
embossing (also referred to as raised laser engraving).
Phosphorescent ink
Ink containing a pigment, which glows when exposed to light of a specific
wavelength, the reactive glow remaining visible and then fading after the light
source is removed.
A type of forgery in which the portrait on a DL/ID is substituted for a different
one after the DL/ID has been issued.
Physical security
The range of security measures applied within the production environment to
prevent theft and unauthorized access to the process.
Annex A
Pre-printed serial number
on card blanks
Identifier printed on card and/or on main components of the card before
transfer to the personalization center(s).
Random pattern resulting
in unique codes
Any random feature intrinsic or individually applied to each document by any
technology giving uniqueness feature that can be controlled either by eye or with
any kind of tool.
Rainbow (split-duct) printing A technique whereby two or more colors of ink are printed simultaneously by
the same unit on a press to create a subtle merging of the colors resulting in a
gradual color change.
Redundant personalized data
Dynamic text and/or image to be printed more than once for redundancy
checking by whatever means.
Security background printing Printed elements that are devoted to secure blank cards and do not include any
dynamic data.
Security bonding
The card periphery incorporates a security bonding material that bonds all of the
layers together. Tamper evidence is seen if access is attempted to obtain the
internal structures of the card.
Security feature
Feature of a document that is linked to a specific method of verification and thus
helps insure the document’s integrity and/or authenticity as a properly issued
document that has not been tampered with.
NOTE: Physical security elements applied during production of a document may
contribute more than one feature and therefore also cover more than one category of
each kind.
Special colors
Colors that are not easily reproduced using CMYK colors.
Strong adhesion
Bonding between top and personalization layer high enough to prevent access to
variable elements for falsification purposes.
Special materials/chemicals hidden inside the card core (plastic, composite paper
or synthetic material) which can only be detected and authenticated with special
Tagged inks
Inks containing taggants.
Tamper evident card body
Card showing evidence of destruction or modification caused by an attack. E.g.,
Security Bonding
Annex A
Thermochromic ink
An ink which undergoes a reversible color change when exposed to heat (e.g.
body heat).
NOTE: The color change is less reactive due to prolonged exposure to heat.
Ultra violet.
No response using a light source with a wavelength between 315 nm and 400 nm.
UV dull
Substrate material exhibiting no visibly detectable fluorescence when illuminated
with UV light or with a controlled response to UV at 365 nm.
UV fluorescent ink
UV fluorescent ink can be either transparent or integrated to an ink visible to
the naked eye; in addition, some UV fluorescent inks can respond to standard
wavelength UV light with one color and with another color to a shorter
wavelength UV light, called Bi-UV.
NOTE: The UV response of fluorescent dyes and pigments is prone to fading after
prolonged exposure to daylight.
Variable laser element
Element that generated by laser engraving or laser perforation displaying
changing information dependent upon the viewing angle.
Variable opacity
comprising two or more grey levels visible against a light source.
Visible evidence
Confirmed real thing by watching.
Visible security device
Security feature protecting dynamic data.
A recognizable image or pattern that appears as various shades of
lightness/darkness when viewed against a light source.
NOTE: Watermarks can be created by thickness or density variations. There are two
main ways of producing watermarks in core material of a card; rolling process, and
the more complex cylinder mould process. Watermarks vary greatly in their visibility.
Window element
Annex A
A type of look through element with a high level of transparency.
Annex B (informative)
Conformity Assessment
Conformity assessment is the name given to the processes that is used to demonstrate that a product (DL/ID)
meets specified requirements. These requirements are contained in standards and guides. The processes that need
to be followed to be able to demonstrate that they meet the requirements are also contained in ISO/IEC standards
and guides.
The use of ISO/IEC standards in conformity assessment procedures allows for harmonization throughout the
world and this, in turn, not only facilitates international interoperability between countries but also gives the
purchaser of the product confidence that it meets the requirements.
The Courtesy Verification Program (CVP) provides an effective way for AAMVA members to determine if their
driver licenses and identification (DL/ID) cards conform to the applicable AAMVA standards and specifications.
AAMVA strongly encourages its member jurisdictions to regularly take advantage of the CVP. Even though
AAMVA has published best practices, standards and specifications covering DL/ID cards for years, inconsistencies
in the implementation of those guidelines continue to occur. These inconsistencies adversely impact the security,
uniformity, and interoperability that are the main goals of the AAMVA standard.
A primary objective of the CVP is improving the consistency of implementation across all jurisdictions.
Information gained from the testing of jurisdictions DL/ID cards and other documents is not only used by
jurisdictions to improve their issuance systems but also is used by AAMVA to make improvements to the standards
it publishes. For more information on the CVP visit
Annex C (informative)
Main Threats to the Security of a DL/ID
C.1 Introduction
This section looks at the main threats to DL/ID security in terms of the ways in which a DL/ID, its issuance and
its use may be fraudulently attacked. The purpose of this section is to provide a context for the recommendation
of security features in the subsequent sections.
The threats are split into three primary categories according to characteristics of the underlying attacks:
Counterfeiting, Falsification and Misuse.
C.2 Counterfeiting Threats
Document design attacks
*A.1.1 Re-creating the basic document look and feel including such as the background pattern,
flags and other fixed motives
Copying and printing a valid document for physical manipulation
Scanning a valid document for modification using computer software
Re-creating of the document using computer software
*A.1.2 Adding personalization information
Image and text editing with computer software (re-origination)
Substitute Material/Personalization attacks
*A.2.1 Substitute Materials
Using substitute materials to imitate original documents
Paper vs Teslin vs PVC vs PET vs PC
Using original material that may be commercially available
*A.2.2 Substitute Printing Methods
Reproduction of background and logos using alternative technologies
Reproduction of text and images using alternative technologies
Screen printing vs offset printing vs dye sublimation vs laser
Inkjet vs dye sublimation vs laser vs laser engraving
*A.2.3 Alternative finishing
Final lamination of the document using commercial laminates
C.3 Falsification Threats
Falsification by physical Modification of Existing Valid Documents
Printing directly on document, e.g. manipulation (erasing, modifying, adding) of data such as
card holder
*B.1.2 Image attacks
Complete substitution of the licence holder’s portrait image
Masking the original portrait by overlaying another photo
Changing the original portrait to alter the appearance of the person
*B.1.3 Delaminating attacks
Partly delaminating to remove genuine features and inserts forged ones (e.g. exchanging
data by replacing the data carrying layers)
Insert forged data or security features after adding, removing or damaging genuine ones
during partial delaminating
Falsification by Recycling
*B.2.1 Extraction of genuine security features
Removal of security features from genuine cards (e.g. a hologram) for reuse in a falsified
*B.2.2 Use of recycled genuine security features in a new falsification
Applying original document parts including data storage elements into forged
Falsification of Logical Data
*B.3.1 Logical data denial of service attack
Destruction of data storage elements to circumvent logical security features
*B.3.2 Logical data substitution attack
Substitution of data storage elements such as IC’s, magnetic stripes and laser recording
Annex C
C.4 Misuse Attacks
Misuse of genuine valid documents
*C.1.1 Identity Theft
An unauthorized person using a valid genuine physical document of another similar
looking person
Misuse of Genuine Invalid Documents
*C.2.1 Invalid Documents
Use of registered lost or stolen documents by look-alikes of the real document holder
*C.2.2 Cloned documents
Cloning of logical data from a similar looking person
Misuse by theft of original blank documents
This category of threats deals with the theft of original blank documents at some stage during the
document life cycle up, until the point of personalization. This can be during the production of the
document, during document transport, or during subsequent storage of the document at the
personalization location.
*C.3.1. Theft of blank cards at the card production site
Misappropriated during the production process
Cards removed for quality assurance purposes
Reject blank cards
Taken from the intermediate production storage
*C.3.2 Theft of blank cards during the transportation process
During card packaging
During card transportation
During intermediate storage
*C.3.3 Blank cards are removed from the personalization site
Annex C
From where they are stored
During the stock issuance process
During the personalization process
Reject/Lost cards
Intermediate storage
*C.3.4 Stolen blank documents personalized using alternative personalization methods that are
available to the attacker
*C.3.5 Stolen documents personalized using the official equipment or using test personalization
Misuse Through the Fraudulent Issue of Genuine Documents
*C.4.1 An attacker makes a fraudulent application for an DL/ID document
Identity theft using genuine breeder documents
Fraudulent breeder documents
*C.4.2 Employee at the issuing authority makes unauthorized requests for DL/ID documents
Employee bribed by an attacker
Annex C
AAMVA DL/ID Card Design Standard
AAMVA DL/ID Security Framework
ANSI/NASPO SA-2013 Security Assurance Standard
Document Security Alliance White Paper: How to select a security feature
ISO 14000 and ISO 9000
ISO 14298
American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators
4301 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 400
Arlington, Virginia 22203
703.522.4200 |
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