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Austria gets its first digital ID in the form of a driver’s license app

States in the US are watching the rollout.
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Austrians can now generate mobile driving licenses (mDLs) on their smartphones, the federal ministry of Internal Affairs announced.

To generate the mDL, Austrians are required to download the eID smartphone app, register for a then upload their physical driving license. The announcement did not clarify why fingerprint or face recognition is required.

“ID Austria has not only developed a state-of-the-art proof of identity, it is also an important contribution to cyber security in Austria,” said Minister for Interior Gerhard Karner, to Biometric Update, during the launch.

“This prevents identity theft and puts a stop to cybercrime. The digital driver’s license as the first digital ID in Austria is a milestone on the way into digitization. I invite you – use the ID Austria and use the digital driver’s license.”

According to Florian Tursky, the Secretary of State for Digitization and Telecommunications, the mDL is the first step to digitization.

“With the eID app and the digital driver’s license, we have also taken the first important step,” he said. “The aim is to eventually make as many ID cards and documents available on mobile phones as possible.”

According to a report by Der Standard, users can control what information to show, meaning the mDL could be used for other things like proof of age. When more data is required, like when hiring a vehicle, a user can use the app to provide more details.

In the US, some states have mDLs. Arizona and Georgia partnered with Apple to generate mDLs in the Wallet.

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