The Dutch driving license goes e


​​​​​​The Dutch driving license goes eLast updated 26 November 2017

A de facto identification ​card

The Netherlands is a densely populated and highly developed country in which mobility is a key factor for the economy. 11 million of its 17m citizens are drivers.

 From January 2005, a new law was passed requiring all Dutch citizens and residents aged 14 and above to carry a valid ID document. A driving license was one of the few documents permitted as a means of secure identification alongside a passport, Dutch or European ID card or residence permit. 

The Dutch Electronic driver's license is born

In 2013, the government opted to upgrade its program and introduce a new driving license model, this time enabled with a contactless micro-processor. As the country was already using a card solution, contract optimization and process re-engineering resulted in this contactless chipbased document at no additional cost to either Dutch drivers or the authorities. 

RDW​, an independent administrative organization of the Dutch government, selected Gemalto's polycarbonate electronic driving license (eDL)​ for its strong protection against fraud​ and forgery as well as advanced document design integrating a microprocessor. The new eDL combines a number of visual, physical and electronic security features​ that make the card harder to copy but easier to use.

​​The inclusion of a micro-processor in the electronic driver's license (eDL) enables police to read​ the data on the card and electronically v​erify the authenticity of the document using smart phones when on the move. By improving interconnection and communication between police and other state agencies in the field the new eDL will facilitate more efficient and effective law enforcement.​​​​​

To learn more on what's so special about polycarbonate, visit our web dossier dedicated to polycarbonate for IDs​.

Security at first sight

"​Ensuring only authorized drivers take to the road is a vital element of any road safety program. André Uuldriks, Unit Manager of the Driving License Department at RDW. 


The new electronic driving license strengthens security as it is much harder to falsify and ensures that authorities can validate the document visually and electronically to match the identity of its holder. Officials have also welcomed the increased security the eDL brings with no increase in the cost of issuing.


 Case study