Synergies of Scale

August 2018

Canada’s four Atlantic provinces, in partnership with Gemalto, move to central issuance and highly secure IDs

The four Atlantic provinces of Canada contracted with Gemalto last year to provide new, highly secure, laser-engraved polycarbonate driver’s licenses and photo ID cards. Formerly available over the counter, the new credentials now are delivered through central issuance from a facility in Burlington, Ontario, thus completing the entire country’s transition to central issuance.

“We’re always looking for these types of joint initiatives because we are four small jurisdictions,” says Graham Miner, director of Prince Edward Island’s Highway Safety Division. “Joining together, we get the economy of scale.”

But there are other benefits of multi-jurisdictional collaboration, he explains. “As we work together … we develop more uniformity and continuity with policy, procedure and sometimes legislation among our different jurisdictions.”

For Gemalto, working with four different provinces proved a unique and rewarding challenge, according to Steve Purdy, vice president of Sales and Marketing, Government Programs. To leverage their collective volumes, the provinces agreed on a common design for the new credentials. But each of them also wanted to have distinctive elements reflective of their own culture and identity.

“We were able to give each of the provinces a product that expresses their individuality through representative icons on the card front and a unique design on the back, while still maintaining consistency in core elements,” Purdy says.

The partnership between Gemalto and the Atlantic provinces promises additional benefits to the citizens served.

For two of the provinces that didn’t already have an updated solution in place, Gemalto is providing algorithmic facial recognition and “one-to-many” vetting for identity verification.

Additionally, signature pads are now able to do more than capture a signature. They can display the address on file for confirmation from the applicant that the information is accurate prior to completing the request for a driver’s license or ID card. This helps minimize mail returns due to an invalid address and also ensures the driver’s license or ID card is shipped to the correct address.

“The Atlantic provinces are very forward-thinking,” Purdy says. “We enjoy working with them and appreciate the collaborative process.”

“We’re always looking down the road and asking, ‘Where are we going to be in 10 years?’” Miner says. “Through AAMVA, we all get together—the different jurisdictions, the vendors—and explore the possibilities of the future.” 

Read more about the provinces’ new highly secure IDs.