Iowa Ready to turn Your iPhone into Your Driver's License

Your iPhone can already serve as your credit card, and Iowa is hoping it'll be your driver's license soon, too. The state is working on an app that shows your driver's license on screen that it hopes will be available in 2015, although privacy concerns may delay its launch.

Iowa driver's licenses are heading to your iPhoneIowa driver's licenses are heading to your iPhone

Iowa officials are working with MorphoTrust USA to develop the app, according to the Wall Street Journal. The company has a long history with license technology and is known for developing the first driver's license with a photo in 1958.

The company is working with Iowa's government to find ways to prevent counterfeit digital licenses from appearing on smartphones, and to keep information that should stay private from being seen. One major concern is how to ensure that police don't look through someone's smartphone for other information, or see text notifications as they come in, when viewing someone's driver's license.

MorphoTrust is working on a system that would allow police to scan a digital driver's license without needing to physically touch the phone. Such a system would require police to carry an additional scanning device just to read digital licenses.

Iowa Governor Terry Branstad was given a project update briefing earlier this week. During the briefing, state Department of Transportation representatives said apps for the iPhone and Android-based smartphones are in development now. They weren't, however, able to give a firm commitment to the 2015 launch because they want to make sure security and privacy issues are addressed before releasing the apps.

[Some image elements courtesy Shutterstock]