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45 Day Identity Theft Window

Ok, a simple question… what did we, the citizens of New Mexico do to deserve this:

New Mexico began converting this week to new, high-tech driver’s licenses and identification cards that state officials say will provide more protection from identity theft.

For the first time, applicants won’t leave MVD counters with their new licenses, but rather with temporary, paper licenses good for 45 days. Permanent licenses— which will be produced in another state— will be sent by mail and should arrive within a couple of weeks, officials said.

This is the way the system will work from now on.

Your kidding me, right? From now on you will have to carry a paper license for 45 days while you are waiting for your license to be produced in another state? That’s absurd. I’ve had drivers licenses in my life from five different states and in two different countries and have never, NEVER had to wait forty-five days to receive it. In fact, I’ve always walked out of the office with my license.

Explain to me which brilliant person at the state level decided this was a good idea. If anything this is going to promote more identity theft, not reduce it. Predators now have 45 days to walk around with a duplicable paper license. Everyday citizens have to carry two pieces of identification instead of one:

Driver’s license applicants who leave the New Mexico Motor Vehicle Division clutching a piece of paper bearing a black-and-white temporary license may wonder who’s going to believe them.

Take heart, says Taxation and Revenue Secretary Rick Homans.

He flew to Boston over the weekend and says he had no problem proving his identity at airline security checkpoints.

“The combination of my temporary license and my old license worked just fine,” said Homans, whose agency oversees the Motor Vehicle Division. He was among the first to get a new license.

Great, because he didn’t have a problem flying into one airport with one set of TSA officers, he assumes everyone is going to process them the same way. Sorry folks, I zig zag across the country all the time and find that more often than not my experience varies from airport to airport.

Plus, what happens to the poor soul who goes to the MVD to get a replacement license for one that was lost or stolen? Exactly, how are they supposed to convince everyone that the black and white temporary copy is a real license. Couldn’t anyone now make a temporary license and pretend to be someone they are not.

This is a disaster waiting to happen. I hope this is simply another example of governmental incompetence. I hope no one uncovers this decision was made because of a political contribution. That would be bad.