Why Massachusetts Residents Might Never Need Chronically Delayed REAL ID
You may have heard the deadline to get your REAL ID has been delayed yet again and now I'm wondering if technology will beat it.
Yes, the deadline for REAL ID (which will be a requirement for domestic flights) was postponed to May 7, 2025. This delay follows the delay implemented early last year that would have required REAL IDs, well, now.
Not enough people have the ID yet. If you're one of them, it's probably partly because you hate the Registry of Motor Vehicles.
This most recent delay has me questioning:
Do all of us really need a Real ID in the physical, lives-in-your-wallet sense? This form of identification would allow us access to airports, military bases and government buildings. Other than airports, the majority of society rarely enters government buildings and really only those who have family or jobs in the military end up on bases.
Another reason for the question (and here is where things get weird): At some airports, you need neither identification nor a boarding pass because new technology is using face recognition to verify your status.
Boston Logan International Airport is one of a handful of major airports across the United States testing the technology. It might only be a matter of time before we see it in use everywhere.
At this point I'm thinking everything will just be digital. Maybe a barcode on our phones to show our identification.
In addition to spending time with you on Fun 107, I work for an airline. Have you been to Logan recently? About half the passengers passing through TSA are simply told to put everything away and just stand there and wait for this computer with a massive database of faces to confirm you are who you say you are and that you're supposed to be traveling.
I'm sure there are plenty of kinks in this technology still and we always have the possibility of data breaches, but it seems this is the direction we're headed.
I can't be the only one thinking that at the rate technology is moving, we will have effective digital ways to verify our identity and that maybe we're wasting resources to get this slow-moving REAL ID program off the ground.
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