Governor Henry signed a bill Thursday that requires all Oklahoma drivers license applicants to have their fingerprints scanned by a computerized fingerimaging device.
SB 23, which was authored by Senator Robert M. Kerr, DAltus, requires the Department of Public Safety DPS to implement a fingerimaging procedure for those who apply for an original, renewal or replacement drivers license or an identification card at state tag agencies.
This new technology will provide Oklahomans with a stateoftheart tool to prove and protect their identities. Our public safety officials have said that this technology is better than the traditional inkandpaper method of fingerprinting, and I believe it will be of great benefit to them and to the public, Senator Kerr said.
According to Senator Kerr, the intent of the bill is to provide a way that not only helps law enforcement officials do their work more efficiently, but also helps protect the identities of state residents.
Identity theft is one of the fastestgrowing crimes in America each year, and we have had thousands of victims in Oklahoma over the last several years. When we start using fingerimaging to supplement drivers licenses and identification cards, we will have an added element of security that helps protect citizens from identity theft and related crimes, Senator Kerr added.
Under SB 23, drivers license and identification card applicants under the age of will be required to obtain authorization from their custodial parent or guardian before submitting to the computerized fingerimaging procedure.
In addition, the bill prohibits any other state or federal agency other than DPS from accessing the digital finger image of any state resident without a court order.
I wanted to make sure that people would feel secure about how their information would be used under this legislation. Thats why only one agency can have regular access to a digital finger image unless a court deems it absolutely necessary to release it to another appropriate entity, Senator Kerr said.
SB 23 will take effect on July .