Why is the license picture black and white?

B&W portrait is a byproduct of our cards being printed on polycarbonate (PC). PC has become the de facto card construction for IDs, particularly in the international market. The biggest advantage is that it is a fully fused, monolithic card that can’t be deconstructed to access the personalization data. 

In our previous cards, the personalization was applied to the surface of the card and thus offers an opportunity to attack the card by “opening it up”. 

Polycarbonate cards are personalized by laser writing and the personalization is in the card. Since the card is fully fused, it can’t be opened up to attack. Unfortunately, except with very expensive equipment, it is not possible to laser write a color image.

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Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles
120 State Street
Montpelier, VT 05603-0001

Monday-Friday: 7:45am-4:30pm
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