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ID document awards

Regional ID Document of the Year Awards were announced at the recent High Security Printing EMEA Conference in Malta, covering government passport and national identity card schemes. Awards were made in three categories – Best New Passport, Best New National ID Card, and Best New ID or Travel Document.

The first went to the Immigration Department of the Ministry of Home Affairs of Tanzania for the new Tanzanian ePassport, pictured. Tanzania recently moved from a machine-readable booklet to the phased use of a complete electronic immigration (or ‘eImmigration’) system. The passport is one component of a complete ‘end to end’ system to support citizen enrolment, adjudication, personalisation, issuance and authentication, besides border control and eVisa systems. The new ePassport features a polycarbonate datapage featuring laser engraving, an optically variable feature and positive and negative embossing incorporating an MLI lens. The datapage also carries an ICAO compliant secure RFID microcontroller chip and operating system.

Other security printing features include end papers with duplex patterns and rainbow split duct printing, and two colour intaglio printing incorporating a latent image and an optically variable print feature. Other features include the use of both visible and invisible inks, Foredge registration feature and hidden page identifiers. An ePassport means that the holder can have an emergency passport on their smartphone, if their passport is stolen or lost in another country.

‘Best New National ID Card’ was named as the new eID programme introduced in December 2018 by the Police and Border Guard Board of Estonia, part of the Ministry of the Interior. The new cards use Estonia’s own font and elements of its national brand, and feature a colour photo, a transparent window and an invisible secondary photograph that will only appear when viewed from an angle. One new detail is the inclusion of a QR code, which will make it easier to check the validity of the ID card.

The new eID card also integrates a new chip that allows contactless use, once service providers start offering corresponding solutions – validating public transport trips for example. The chip on the new card carries embedded files, and uses 2048-bit public key encryption, allowing its use as definitive proof of ID electronically.

Best New ID and Travel Document went to Germany’s Bundeskriminalamt, the Federal Criminal Police Office and Bundesdruckerei, the country’s state printer, for the new EU Visa sticker project.

As part of the EU Commission Action Plan as the EU’s response to travel document fraud, all European member states will be introducing the new EU visa sticker in 2019. The project was a result of the collective work under the EU Article 6 Committee and associated subgroup on the development of an improved uniform format visa. Visit


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