AUGUSTA, GA- Governor Sonny Perdue today visited the Department of Driver Services at the Augusta customer service center to launch the center's implementation of a new and more secure licensing system. The new licenses and identification cards will combat document fraud and protect the identities of Georgia's citizens by using the latest credentialing technology.
"The safety and security of our citizens is our highest priority, and this newly designed license is another effort to protect Georgians," said Governor Perdue. "DDS strives to bring Georgians the best in customer service. Commissioner Dozier and his team have mapped out a plan to make this a smooth transition by providing state-of-the-art technology and 'one-stop shop' service."
New card production began at the Conyers, Covington and Locust Grove locations in early December. As of today 38 of the 64 centers have launched the new licensing system. Statewide implementation will continue until all customer service center locations are producing the new cards by January 2010. All previously issued Georgia licenses and IDs will remain valid until the expiration date.
"I would like to thank the Governor, our business partners and customers for their support asDDS continues to build a foundation for customer service, to secure the integrity of our services and ultimately protect the safety of the citizens of Georgia," said Gregory C. Dozier, DDS Commissioner.
The new documents are designed to be more difficult to counterfeit, alter or replicate. The license will remain roughly the size of a credit card. The new cards have several security features including ghost photos, a laser-engraved signature over the primary photo to minimize alterations and a tamper resistant coating placed over the card. The cards will feature machine-readable barcodes that can be used by banks, retailers and other businesses to verify the information printed on the front.
A major security feature of the new process is designed to combat underage drinking. Cards issued to those "Under 21" will be printed in a vertical format, aiding retailers and law enforcement in identifying minors.
Another new security practice will be the issuance of an interim driver's license or ID. Interim documents will be printed on special security paper which is highly sensitive and will discolor after any attempt to alter it. It contains a photo and signature to allow its use for identification purposes. Interim cards will be valid for up to 45 days or until a permanent laminated license or ID is mailed from the central production print facility to the applicant's mailing address on file with DDS.
The permanent licenses and IDs will be mailed directly to the customer on a mailing carrier that is folded and enclosed in a generic envelope without exposing the actual cards. When the permanent card is received, the interim should be destroyed in accordance with Georgia law and to safeguard personal information. The carrier should be filed by the customer to access later should their license be lost or stolen.
Customer Service Improvements
The new licensing system includes a new data management system with electronic imaging to scan documents where they may be securely stored and easily accessed later. DDS has taken great care in safeguarding our customer's private information. Each customer's personal information becomes a part of the personal driver's license record. It will remain confidential and is disclosed only as authorized or required by law.
When visiting DDS in person, a more efficient one-window-process provides customers with a "one-stop shopping" experience at most locations eliminating the need to visit multiple windows.
If a transaction can not be completed once begun, data can be filed and stored until the required information is presented to complete the service. A customer may visit another location where the stored information may be quickly accessed.
New state-of-the-art equipment will be installed including modern computer and photography equipment and printers that will be faster and more reliable.
Online transactions continue to be available such as initiating a change of address or replacing a lost license. For more information, please visit www.dds.ga.gov.