Recent incidents have been reported regarding the photocopying of military identification cards and common access cards by commercial establishments to verify military affiliation to provide government rates for services. The photocopying of U.S. Government identification cards is a violation of Title 18, U.S. Code Part I, Chapter 33, Section 701 and punishable by fine and imprisonment.

"This prohibition, however, does not apply to government agencies," said Robert Krauer, director of Aberdeen Proving Ground Emergency Services. "Police can make copies for official purposes."

Although asking for military/government identification is totally permissible by commercial establishments, many government personnel are unaware of the prohibition on duplication of government identification.

There are no safeguards in place to insure a government identification card won't be counterfeited or "cloned" based on a photocopy by a commercial establishment. Criminal elements and terrorist organizations place U.S. Government identification as a high value logistical element when planning acts against the U.S. military.

It's recommended that military and Department of Defense travelers provide a state drivers license or other form of photo identification to be photocopied if an establishment insists on a photocopy of the traveler's identification.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16