Document Verification: A digital-only solution to scan passports


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What is a Passport?

It is a travel paper that approves the citizenship of a person in foreign countries. While an ID card approves the identity within one country or region only. It is a bit different from an ID card as it is issued after a specific age (18 normally) and every citizen must have an ID card.

While a passport is issued after the request of a person at any time, there is no age restriction for it. Also, it is not obligatory for all residents, only those who want to travel abroad must have this. A person without a passport and visa can’t enter the borders of a country.While an id document is in the shape of a card, a passport is a booklet with 20 to 30 pages. Most commonly a passport is in the international language i.e. English.

Features of Passport

A passport contains the personal information of an individual like the name, father’s name, birthday, nationality, sex, address, and photograph. There is also a signature and physically identifiable mark. In modern times, a passport also contains a machine-readable zone (MRZ). The presence of MRZ code greatly helps in effective document verification.
Some states of the EU are also insisting on using biometrics (fingerprints) on passports. This will enhance the security of identity verification. The fingerprints will be stored in the form of a picture on passports.
With the growing threat of travel scams, identity thefts, and illegal cross-border travel, passport authenticity is also at risk. Criminals might use fake or stolen passports to travel. To counter this threat document verification is essential.

Document Verification

To check the originality of the passport, the fully automated solution is used known as online document verification. Before that airport and airline workers check the passport and data on it. As this process was manual, it takes more time and cost with less accuracy rate.
The process is now transformed where the online software performs the verification check. Below is the process of online document verification:


This is the first step of online document validation, the picture of the passport page containing data and image is uploaded to the software. There is no need to use some specific camera or lens for image capture, a normal mobile phone’s clicked image can be used for it.


The information on the page is extracted. Optical character recognition technology is utilized for data extraction. It extracts all the required data from the document in no time.

AI-powered OCR is mature enough to capture data from all state-issued passports. If some passport is in the native language of a country, it could be a problem for a manual document check. For this translators are used which also increases the cost of document attestation. While the online software can extract all languages’ data and can translate it into the desired language.


These are verification steps in which the document image undergoes through all checks. First, the genuineness of the document is confirmed. The format of the paper is validated. This step is very critical to block fake passports. Holograms, stamps, signatures, rainbow effects, and the paper quality are analyzed.
These are the signs of original documents. Absence or tempering of these features are marks of fake documents below are the type of passports which are used by fraudsters to bypass the passports scanners

Fake Passports

The passports are not issued by the government instead made by scammers. They lack the originality features or an original passport. These are used to create synthetic identities

Modified Passports

These passports have minor alterations. For instance, some people alter their date of birth to get special old-age flight discounts

False Passports

The passports which are genuine but belong to some other person are known as false passports. In Identity theft, false passports are utilized.


By discussing all the above points it can be said that the involvement of fake passports in the travel industry can be blocked by having online document verifications services. A person’s identity and passport are verified in just 60 seconds. Passport scanners can be implemented on airports which can screen travelers in real-time. This will make air travel safer while giving verification results in less time and resources.

A Cook, Software analyst & Blogger.


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