An identity document (also called a piece of identification or ID, or colloquially as papers) is any document which may be used to identify a person or verify aspects of a person's personal identity. If issued in a small, standard credit card size form, it is usually called an identity card (IC or ID card). Some countries issue formal identity documents, while others may require identity verification using informal documents. When the identity document incorporates a person's photograph, it may be called photo ID.
In the absence of a formal identity document, a driver's license may be accepted in many countries for identity verification. Some countries do not accept driver's licenses for identification, often because in those countries they do not expire as documents and can be old or easily forged. Most countries accept passports as a form of identification.
Some countries require foreigners to have a passport or occasionally a national identity card from their country available at any time if they do not have a residence permit in the country.
The personal information present on the identity document, or in a supporting database, might include the bearer's full name, a portrait photo, age, birth date, address, an identification number, profession or rank, religion, ethnic or racial classification, restrictions, and citizenship status.
A version of the passport considered to be the earliest identity document inscribed into law was introduced by King Henry V of England with the Safe Conducts Act 1414.〔("A brief history of the passport" ), The Guardian, 17 November 2006〕
For the next 500 years and before World War I, most people did not have or need an identity document.
When photography technology became widely available in the early 20th century, photographs became part of passports and other ID documents such as driver's licenses, all of which came to be referred to as "photo IDs".
The shape and size of identity cards were standardized in 1985 by ISO/IEC 7810. Some modern identity documents are smart cards including a difficult-to-forge embedded integrated circuit, that were standardized in 1988 by ISO/IEC 7816. New technologies allow identity cards to contain biometric information, such as photographs, face, hand or iris measurements, or fingerprints. Electronic identity cards (or e-IDs) are already available in countries including Belgium, Estonia, Finland, Guatemala, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Morocco, Portugal and Spain.
抄文引用元・出典: フリー百科事典『 ウィキペディア（Wikipedia）』