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Driver's License and IDs Rejected for Travel - Real IDs and Passports ONLY!

No change today can happen without the involvement of technology. Technology has grown to be an everyday use which has become the core function of everything that we do as a species. For this reason, the Federal Government has embraced this reality much faster than everyone else. One of the ways that the government has managed to implement technology based solutions and now laws, is through changing the way how everyday functions are completed or accepted. An example of this is the government standard for acceptable identification. Most people think of an ID as going down to your local DMV and getting a state issued ID or using your Driver’s license. Well, thanks to the Real ID Act of 2005 which was signed into law by President Bush over 12 years ago.

Many people are unaware of the Real ID act of 2005, but as January 22nd, 2018, most anyone traveling in the United States on an airplane will know the Real ID act of 2005 and how it affects them. How will everyone that takes an airplane become aware? Well that is a good question, and IT GURUS OF ATLANTA has the answer. As of January 22nd, 2018, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will no longer accept Drivers Licenses or State issued IDs that are not part of the REAL ID system as acceptable forms of identification to travel domestically from state to state. This means that if you are traveling from New York to California, you will need to have a passport, or some other federal government issued ID to be able to travel. With this now being December, most people already have tickets to travel to various destinations domestically in January by now or months after. So, for all airline travelers that travel on or after January 22nd, 2018, this applies to you.

The change will go into effect for 25 out of the 50 states immediately. The states that still allow travel domestically with a state issued ID that are not REAL ID compliant will be under a strict guideline to comply to the mandated law. It is highly advised that for those that do not have a passport, that getting one should be at the top of the agenda prior to boarding an aircraft. People may find that they can board an airplane into a destination, but they cannot board their flight going home or connecting flight due to the mandated law. With getting a passport not being a mandatory requirement, few people have a passport to travel. This law forces the hand of Americans to now get a passport to be compliant.

President Bush in 2005 signed this $82 billion-dollar military spending bill which required all American IDs to be electronically readable and federal approved. Today, all state IDs are different including driver’s licenses. Each state has their own standard for how their IDs look and how they are deemed compliant for that state. With so many different IDs available per state, going from state to state makes the validity of an ID hard to determine. The focus behind Real ID is to put an end to this current state of no standard. This action was derived from the commission report recommendation after the attack on the United States on 9/11. More secure IDs is the determining factor to reduce terrorism.

All state issued ID cards will be required to have a minimum amount of data backed up by verifiable documents. This data contained on the ID cards must be accessible by other states including the federal government. For a state to be compliant, the ID must contain the person’s full name, signature, date of birth, gender, ID number, physical address, front-facing photograph, and all this data should be machine readable via a barcode scanner. Facial recognition is a requirement for the IDs to be compliant for the government to link the data to individuals. Does this sound like RFID? Well it does, but fortunately for now, RFID requirements are not on the table, even though these activities seem to be priming society for its introduction as a mandatory requirement.

The states that are currently compliant with Real ID are as follows:




New Mexico



South Dakota












West Virginia


North Carolina






All other states either have an extension to become compliant or are under review. Acceptable forms of Real ID are a Green Card, Passport, Military ID, or a State Issued Real ID. No other license or IDs will be accepted for domestic travel starting January 22nd, 2018.

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