South Koreans now have Blockchain driving licences

One million South Koreans have given up their physical driver’s licenses in favor of a Blockchain-driven digital alternative. According to current usage statistics, Blockchain driving licences are already enjoying great popularity.

The program – to be able to use Blockchain driving licenses from now on – was only launched in May. Nevertheless, one million South Koreans have already opted for a license based on Blockchain. In South Korea, this corresponds to more than 3% of the total driver population, which, according to Statista, comprised 32.6 million drivers with driving licences in 2019. This is the first authorized digital ID card to be used throughout South Korea and was approved by the South Korean Ministry of Science and ICT in September 2019.

Store and authenticate driver’s license on smartphone

The project was launched in May by the National Police Department in partnership with the Korean Road Administration and the country’s three main telecommunications providers. Using a block-chain identity app called PASS, South Koreans can store and authenticate their driver’s licenses on their smartphones. By last month, 27 of South Korea’s driver’s license testing centers were using the PASS app to renew and reissue digital driver’s licenses.

The legally recognized ID solution can also be used for identification and age verification requirements, for example to buy cigarettes or alcohol in retail stores. Users show their license via a barcode or QR code on the app. Non-Korean residents receive English versions of the licenses.

Other industries, including car rental and carpooling services, are also exploring the possibility of using these badges as a substitute for personal checks.

South Korea promotes Blockchain

With a recently passed amendment, the country has legally legitimized the trading and holding of crypto-currencies. This fully integrates the handling of crypto-currencies into the legal system.

This week alone, South Korea has announced several integrations of Blockchain technology.

For example, beach visitors in Busan can pay for their services with Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH). South Korea’s largest bank also plans to introduce crypto-custody services.

Most recently, the South Korean central bank also announced the launch of a CBDC pilot program several months ago.

*Originally published in German at

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