A free app from Apple's iOS App Store that let folks create realistic looking but fake driver licenses has now been removed from the download store. As reported by MacRumors.com, the app had been available to download from the App Store for the past two years. However, Apple has now taken it down following a request by US Senator Bob Casey of Pennsylvania.
The app itself was created by DriversEd.com, an online resource to help people obtain real driver licenses in the US. The free Drivers License App was supposed to be a fun app that would let people create "crazy" looking licenses but with realistic looking layouts for the IDs. People could use the app to change any and all personal information and insert whatever image they wanted in the ID. The app's description added, "When you're done, just email your licenses or send them to Facebook for easy sharing!"
While the obvious intent was to let anyone create some fun looking driver IDs, that was lost on both Senator Casey as well as the group The Coalition for a Secure Driver's License. In April the president of that organization, D. Brian Zimmer, sent Apple a letter expressing his "grave concern" over the LicenseEd.com app, saying, "There is no reason for anyone to use the application except to create a driver’s license to be used as an identity document that misrepresents biographical information about the possessor."
That letter didn't have the desired effect so today the organization revealed that Senator Casey sent his own letter to Apple requesting that the drivers license app be taken down. Senator Casey's letter said:
I believe this application poses a threat to public safety and national security…it can be used in a way that allows criminals to create a new identity, steal someone else's identity, or permit underage youth to purchase alcohol or tobacco illegally. National security systems depend on the trustworthiness of driver's licenses, yet with a counterfeit license created by the app, a terrorist could bypass identity verification by the Transportation Security Administration, or even apply for a passport.
Senator Casey's letter apparently got Apple to finally remove the app from the App Store. So far DriversEd.com has not issued a statement on this matter.
Image via DriversEd.com