South Korea blockchain ID app eyed to ‘pass’ driver verification

South Korea’s SK Telecom has launched a blockchain identity app called “Pass,” which enables authentication for different services.

Telecom companies KT and LG U+ developed Pass, which has been around since 2018. Pass enables verification of a user’s driver’s license and is useful in situations where a person has to prove they are of drinking age without sharing other personal details.

Since the app is linked to the license verification system of the National Police Agency and Korean Highway Traffic Authority, it provides access to other verification features if need be. For instance, through the app a user’s identity can be verified and linked to the device on which it is installed to prevent fraudulent use.

“This is the first time in Korea to provide a nationwide digital driver’s license verification service. Pass mobile driving license verification service will be rapidly expanded in the future to expand the field of use and for mobile financial transactions,” SK Telecom’s Lee Tong said.

The mobile application was used to identify persons at select convenience store chains in South Korea to prevent the sale of alcohol and tobacco to minors. Barcodes provided by buyers can be scanned by store employees using the Pass app to verify the age of buyers.

Since 2014, the South Korea government has taken essential steps in curbing and limiting sales of alcohol and tobacco to minors using false identification cards for purchase. The Pass app is another measure that promises to be more productive in achieving this goal.

Other features of the app include virtual renewal and insurance of a license at the National Driver’s License Test Center rather than obtaining an updated physical card.

The launch of Pass follows South Korea’s LG testing of digital currency payment through face recognition. The tech giant believes this method of payment using face recognition, which requires no physical contact to exchange payments, is more convenient than QR codes and smart tags.

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