Tanzania’s e-passports are among the newest digital passport documents in the world, and they are getting recognition in part due to the inclusion of an emergency digital passport stored in the citizen’s smartphone.

The ID documents, from HID Global, won best new e-passport in late March at the High Security Printing EMEA.

According to HID, “in just four months, Tanzania transitioned from awarding the contract to HID Global and its partners, Smurfit Kappa Security Concepts (previously DLRS Group Security Concepts), Absolute Graphics and Softnet, to completion.” 

The e-passport includes a polycarbonate data page as “an optically variable feature and positive and negative embossing incorporating an MLI lens. The data page also carries an ICAO compliant secure RFID microcontroller chip and operating system with ICAO LDS 1.7 as well as BAC, EAC and the latest SAC/PACE security mechanisms, certified up to EAL6+.”

As well, “the design of the booklet captures local themes and cultures across the visa pages, data page and end papers, helping to engender a sense of national pride in the carrier.”

Tanzania digital passports for smartphones

The United Republic of Tanzania began issuing the passport on 31 January 2018. The new e-passport technology and system enables holders of the e-passport to store an emergency digital passport on their smartphones, too. That emergency digital passport, “verifiable electronically" allows the traveler to obtain the necessary document to return home or request a replacement passport without the need for further online checks, filling out forms or other time-consuming tasks.”

That mobile emergency passport was built using HID’s mobile goID technology.

But that’s not the only benefit of Tanzania’s e-passport — it also enables citizens to pass through automated border control stations. “The passport booklet is one component of an end to end system solution to support the enrollment, adjudication, personalization, issuance and authentication of the e-passport, plus border control and eVisa systems.”