1. Driver Licence Card Number

What is changing?

From 1 September 2022, the card number on a driver licence (DL) will be a mandatory verification field for NSW, ACT, SA, TAS, NT and WA issued licences.

Although the field will not be mandatory until 1 September 2022, we still recommend you send the card numbers because the DVS will be able to verify it. The two remaining states, VIC and QLD, are unlikely to enforce the field as mandatory until 2023.

The card number is a unique identifier which is updated each time a driver's licence is re-issued. Including card number in the matching criteria ensures that the document being presented is the most recently issued document and this will minimise the risk of identity theft using a stolen or lost driver licence.

When do I need to be ready?

The table below provides a summary of the current status in each state and what it means for you, and we will continue to provide updates as they become available.


When will the technical specifications and test data be available?

The technical specifications and test data are already available in the Equifax Developer Centre. Customers can request access here if you need to.

Where is the card number located? Is it the same for all jurisdictions?

The location of the card number field differs between jurisdictions, and for NT driver licences, it can differ depending on the issuing date. For driver licence image samples, refer to Attachment B in the DVS match specifications - driver licences in the DVS Portal.

What is the impact for ACT & SA cards since DVS can only verify cards issued on or after 1 January 2014?

100% of all active and not expired cards for these states will have a card number. Suspended, or disqualified and expired licences are still able to be verified via the DVS. So if any of these cards were issued before 2014 they will not have a card number captured.

Is the card number different to a licence number?

Yes. Licence Number is an existing field and is already mandatory. Card Number was never used for verification and will now be used, based on each State’s timeline. With this change customers will need to provide both the Licence Number and Card Number along with the other mandatory driver licence details.

How does the card number change apply to lost and stolen driver licences?

The enforcement of the driver licence card number as a mandatory field will ensure that driver licences with a card status of lost or stolen will not verify via the DVS and only the most recently issued card will verify.

What if the driver licence does not have an issue date on the physical card?

Most cards have either 5 or 10 year duration so we suggest having messaging for your users based on the expiry date.

If we do not send the card number after 1 September 2022 for mandatory states, would that verification request be rejected by IDMatrix or do you still send it to DVS?

IDMatrix will reject the document request and return the following error message in the Service Result Detail section; 'Request missing mandatory value: driversLicence.cardNumber'. Such document requests will therefore not be sent to the DVS. More details of the error can be found in the API Connectivity Guide.

Will the card number be included in Digital Driver Licences?

NSW digital driver licences already include the card number. SA is in the process of adding the card number to the SA digital licence and we have not received any timelines yet. QLD is in th process of rolling out a digital licence and it will include the card number.

Is there a user interface best practice we can use to implement the change?

Equifax recommends a user interface with enough flexibility to cater for jurisdictional differences. 

One approach is to have a drop down menu for individuals to select the issuing state, and based on the selection, to provide a customised set of data fields. For example, if Victoria is selected, then the card number field may either not be shown or will be optional (for future use). 

If NSW is selected, then the card number field may be made mandatory before a customer can proceed further with the application.

Due to the jurisdictional nuances, providing a visual cue for customers will also help ensure that the correct information is provided. Common errors include:

  • Not capturing the name as it appears on the document
  • Providing the card number in the licence number field.

What response should we expect if the card number provided does not match the DVS record?

You will get the same Fail response you currently get if any of the driver licence fields do not match.

If an individual requests a replacement or renewal, is there any time lapse before the new card number is verifiable?

In the majority of cases, the updates are done near real time as soon as the new card is issued. The DVS manager is working with all the jurisdictions to determine the business rules to cater for any edge cases, and that information might be included by the DVS in the Expanded Response Fields.


2. DVS expanded response field

How will the additional response field information benefit me?

You will receive more information in the response field for each data set source.  Today, additional information is only available for unsuccessful DVS verification resulting from a data validation error, which happens when the data provided does not meet the specified field requirements.
The expanded response field will help teams identify and address the root cause of failures faster as it will include failed verification reasons from the document issuer, where the data provided did not match the information available. The additional information will be returned as part of the Document Verification Service (DVS) result codes for verification transactions across all DVS data sources. 
You may choose to use this additional information to support your analytics, such as diagnosing ‘fail’ transaction results and when optimising verification pass rates. The additional response information returned will provide more detailed information for unsuccessful document verification transactions. This will be particularly useful if you are also implementing the driver licence card number change.

How will I be affected?

Given additional data will be sent through in the dataset response fields, the first thing you will need to do is check if you are currently using the response field and identify any subsequent rules and decisioning in your system.  This will allow you to assess if there is any impact from the additional data coming through and provide insight into how you may want to use the new data available to you.

When will I start receiving additional response field information?

The additional response field information was released into production on 23 January, 2022 and we expect DVS to start providing the information by the end of Q3 2022.


3. Commonwealth electoral roll changes

The Commonwealth electoral roll is moving to the Document Verification Service (DVS). The Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) anticipates the change to be complete by the end of Q2 2022. The existing Electoral Roll hosted by Equifax will still be available until early 2023 so migrations will begin in July 2022 in consultation with the restricted list of customers that have access to this datasource.

How will the electoral roll moving to the DVS benefit me?

Faster updates and real time data! The Commonwealth electoral roll moving to the DVS will mean updates to the Commonwealth electoral roll information will be available in real time, as opposed to being updated each quarter. Equifax will no longer receive quarterly updates directly from the AEC, which capture changes made to the Commonwealth electoral roll in the previous 3 months. Instead, Commonwealth electoral roll information will be matched against the AEC data source via DVS in real time. 

How will I be affected?

Equifax recommends you review your profile configuration to understand the potential impacts to your business. Areas for consideration can include:

  • What is your verification rule?
  • What data sources do you currently use?
  • How do the data sources you use contribute to your verification rule?

The Commonwealth electoral roll move to the DVS will result in exact matching on name, DOB and some components of address. This may lead to a decrease in dataset match rates.

IDMatrix currently utilises ‘fuzzy’ matching for the Commonwealth electoral roll. Unlike exact matching, which requires information provided to exactly match the data source, fuzzy matching balances the need to allow for natural variations in data within verification sources, with the need to verify an individual’s identity to a high degree of confidence.

When will the technical specifications and test data be available?

The DVS match specifications for the Commonwealth electoral roll are now available in the DVS portal and if you do not have access to the portal you can contact Equifax.

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