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Digi IDs given thumbs up

Wednesday, 27th December, 2017

By Andrew Robertson

It isn’t due to be rolled out across the state until next year but a local publican already likes the idea of a digital proof of age.

Boat and fishing licences have already gone digital and the Coalition government flagged its intention to extend the technology to driver’s licences in the lead up to the last election.

It’s now trialling a digital driver licence app in Dubbo that can also be used as proof of age and will likely see physical licences and proof of age cards eventually become redundant.   

The test was an opportunity to demonstrate the additional levels of identity security that a digital licence provided over a physical one, according to Minister for Road, Maritime and Freight, Melinda Pavey.    

John Green from the Australian Hotels Association of NSW, who was in the city earlier this month, said about a thousand people had signed up to the trial which was the first of its kind in Australia. 

“Finance, Services and Innovation are trialling it in half a dozen pubs in Dubbo, and then after the trial we’ll roll it out in NSW, probably in late 2018.”

Mr Green, the AHA NSW’s director of liquor and policing, demonstrated the app which displays the licence holder’s picture and details along with a real time security feature.  

“So all my licence details are there, police will have a code reader, they’ll be able to scan it, it will show my demerit points (and) history.”

He said that, initially, the digital licence will be an “opt-in” for people who will still be able to use their physical licence and ID.

Theatre Royal licensee Di Flack, who received a demonstration of the technology from Mr Green, said anything that makes it easier for her to identify people can only be a good thing. 

Ms Flack said she asks everyone who wants to enter the venue for their ID, regardless of age, and often wants to see a second ID just in case.   

“I like to know who’s in the venue, whether they’re 18 or 80,” she said.

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